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The name of Otto Nicolai is inextricably linked to his opera The Merry Wives of Windsor, so his sacred music tends to take a back seat. This selection includes the Mass in D, which opens with a lyrical, flowing Kyrie full of the operatic influences of Italy which he maintains throughout the work. The Mass has a particularly tuneful setting of the Credo, which comes as a welcome change for this reviewer. Admittedly some of the writing is predictable, but is compensated for by inspired sections such as the Agnus Dei. Enhanced by sympathetic orchestral writing, here is a very good amalgam of soloists, choir and orchestra, which makes for a persuasive performance. The remaining repertoire is performed with the same skill.

SHIRLEY RATCLIFFE Read the full review on Agora Classica

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