Lots of early music recordings came my way in 2009. Here are my favorites for the year.
CD of the year
More Divine Than Human, Music from the Eton Choirbook
The Choir of Christ Church, Oxford
Stephen Darlington, director
This is how the Eton Choirbook was intended to be heard.
J. S.Bach: Orchestral Suites for a Young Prince
Monica Huggett, violin and director
Refreshing new takes on old favorites.
J. S. Bach: Preludi ai corali
Quartetto Italiano di Viole da Gamba; Tölzer Knabenchor
(Winter & Winter GmbH)
Gorgeous strings blending with treble choir.
G.F. Handel: Clori, Tirsi e Fileno
Roberta Invernizzi, Yetzabel Arias Fernández, sopranos; Romina Basso, alto
Fabio Bonizzoni, director
The newest release in the brilliantly performed complete Handel cantata series.
Nicola Popora: Arias
Karina Gauvin, soprano
Il Complesso Barocco
Alan Curtis, director
Perhaps this is the recording that finally puts Gauvin at the top of the soprano heap.
Salomone Rossi: The Song of Solomon and Instrumental Music
Profeti Della Quinta
It’s about time an ensemble finally made a truly excellent recording of Rossi’s sacred music.
Alessandro Scarlatti: Messa per il santissimo natale
Giovanni Battista Pergolesi: Messa di s. emidio
Rinaldo Alessandrini, director
Two major additions to the repertoire and nobody performs this music better than Alessandrini and crew.
Song of Songs
All the buzz about Stile Antico is true—reminds of the records the Tallis Scholars used to make before all of their recordings started to sound the same.
Georg Philipp Telemann: Telemann and the Baroque Gypsies
Matthias Maute, recorder and director
Sensational performances by Maute and company in a lively program.
200 Years of Music at Versailles
(Centre Musical de Baroque de Versailles)
A miraculous collection. Would have liked some music by the great clavecinists, but easily the greatest survey of the French Baroque available.