Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Bach Cantatas - Ton Koopman Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra Choir|
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
Widely accepted as a leading authority on Baroque music, Ton Koopman introduces and conducts five of J.S. Bach?s religious cantatas (composed between 1707 and 1731) and his famous secular Kaffee Kantate. Performed by the A... more »
A Peaceful. Easy Feeling
Kurt Harding | Boerne TX | 07/13/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Classical music is a little out of the area where I feel competent making qualitative judgements. I own some classical recordings, but no way do I have expertise in the field. But I know what I like when I hear it and I really like this.
Ton Koopman's Bach Cantatas recently came to my attention when it was highly praised on The Beanstalk, which is a forum where fans of Procol Harum can exchange information and opinions about music, especially the music of Procol Harum. Since some of the band's early recordings were heavily influenced by the music of Bach, it is natural that Bach would have many followers in common with PH. Though I know Bach's music more by reputation than by hearing, I trust the musical opinions of the writer who praised this so I decided to give it a shot.
Those who know the music already know how great it can be with an expert conductor. And as little as I know about classical music, I see in Ton Koopman not only a man who knows the music intimately but one who loves it passionately. This will become clear in the nearly three hours of music and informative soliloquy presented here.
While watching for the first time, I was filled with a peaceful easy feeling that soon banished all thoughts of anything except my thorough enjoyment of what I saw and heard. The Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir, under Koopman's conduction, render exquisite and pleasing to the senses six full-length Bach Cantatas. If you understand German, all the better, but you should enjoy them nevertheless.
As I listened, the thought crossed my mind that if there is any music that is pleasing to God or that consciously tries to be pleasing to him, then surely this must be it. Ton Koopman's Bach Cantatas DVD is high culture at your fingertips. Reach out and grab some for yourself. You'll never regret owning this."
J. Anderson | Monterey, CA USA | 11/05/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Dutch musician/musicologist Ton Koopman leads performances of six Bach cantatas in a mostly successful filmed musical venture. The performances by the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir adhere to accepted standards of 'Baroque performance' while manifesting Bach's red-blooded music with passionate abandon. Especially welcomed is the inclusion of BWV 106 'Actus Tragicus', Bach's funeral cantata of humble mien and ecstatic everlasting richness, with a superbly played opening sonatina, the singers entering the stage only toward its conclusion. My one disappointment was the really unnecessary commentary throughout by Koopman. I'm a musician and teacher who appreciates Koopman's musical attainment, but his ability to communicate Bach's essence with words is fraught with the nomenclature of musicians that translates confusedly at best to the average viewer, a criticism frequently made to me by my students who have watched the film. I reckon one man's 'informative soliloquy' is another's made-to-order bore. I don't find the spiritual attainment in these performances that one finds in the Cantata performances of Bach Collegium Japan, but the rewards here are plentiful regardless. Recommended for lovers of Bach's cantatas. This dvd is definitely a worthwhile plus to the available catalogue."
Was für schöner Musik!
Joshua L. Lindgren | Twin Cities. Minnesota | 04/26/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"For someone born, raised, and currently still living in the Central United States, having the chance to see even one major Bach work without having to travel at least an hour by car is a rarity. Being able to see so many as are featured on this DVD is a veritable Bach buffet! Ton Koopman's renditions leave naught for want and, as a special treat, the Kaffe Kantate adds an amazingly candid look at how human Bach actually was! (Who would have thought!?)
When I first received this DVD, I watched it through completely twice before I was able to go on with anything else; what a treat!"
Beyond the music, excellent photography!
C. Wright | Mountain View, CA United States | 09/17/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Like some others, I am relishing repeated showings/listenings of this luscious DVD. I love it, and also enjoying Koopman's mini lectures. I have many many classical music videos...some of which I share with my mother, who has dementia. If the photography is appealing and clear, she is sucked right in and conducts along with the music, as she did here. Although the ensembles are bare bone, as in Bach's days, the production is not at all dry. The multiple cameras do more than just pan and zoom in. Cameras are on booms and perhaps even a steadicam. The camera floats over the orchestra, around the front to focus on the soloist. The choice of camera angles and shots seems to be flawless...you can always tell what is going on. The "Kaffee Kantata" is shot at a picturesque old coffee house...and partially staged with costumes. Also, the other cantatas are shot in a few different venues, with the performers changing outfits, so nothing seems old. Enjoyed hearing a few less familiar pieces, such as the Actus Tragicus and the 131. Wish he'd film the St. John and b minor mass. This set was expensive to film...wow. Oh, the solo soprano tones rather stressed my Bose computer speakers, but sounded great on the Sennheiser headphones."