Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|JS Bach Matthaus Passion|
Genres: Indie & Art House, Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
Excellent=St.MatthewPassion at King's Coll, Cambridge (UK)
Dan Fee | Berkeley, CA USA | 10/01/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Despite the very latest research and arguments, weighing forth on the likelihood that good old JS Bach probably assigned one singer per part, for the passions; it is good to have a larger choir and six good soloists to carry the varied, and vivid duties they are given in this performance. The surround sound channels require good balancing on your multi-channel system, if you are going to get a solid sound stage. Otherwise, you get the reverberant sidelines of the chapel, but not the center-stage musical presences. Usually, I find in my own home system that the center channel is best left at low levels, otherwise it will overpower the other side and back channels. In this DVD, however, a stronger center channel actually serves to positively anchor the aural front half of the large acoustic. Your mileage may vary, depending on your system. It pays to take some pains to get the channels balanced, so that you can appreciate everything that is on offer in this performance of the Saint Matthew Passion. All of the soloists are good to very good, and the choral work is excellent. The Brandenburg Consort is small enough to be vibrantly characterful in its accompaniments, while still being large enough to generate real heft and swing in the larger concerted sections (i.e. the opening Daughter's of Zion chorus and elsewhere). The piquant colors of the woodwinds play off, just right, against the lower strings in particular. For once, the continuo sounds like music instead of just wheezy filler. The great Protestant pietist is always commenting theologically in every page of his music for this justifiably hallowed and famous work. In this performance, you get it, clearly. The layered effects have been captured quite beautifully in this multi-layered music. At least in the USA, you may find this item for considerably less than a full-price classical music DVD; so grab it up, and enjoy. It offers you a chance to visit King's College, Cambridge, Chapel; savor the devotional and dramatic qualities of JS Bach's most considerable passion music; and otherwise prove to yourself that your multichannel system can do music, as well as it can do car crashes, explosions, and aliens landing from Venus. Highly recommended."