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Bach Christmas Oratorio Parts 1,2,3 & 6
Anna Dennis soprano
Helen Charlston mezzo-soprano
Gwilym Bowen tenor
Laurence Williams bass
Steven Devine director/keyboard
From the unbounded joy of the opening chorus, Jauchzet, Frohlocket (Celebrate, Rejoice) to the concluding movements marking the adoration of the Magi, Bach’s Christmas Oratorio is a festive treat.
Vigorous, uplifting choruses contrast with hugely expressive solos and duets, and orchestral colours range from blazing trumpets and drums to the mellow, pastoral depiction of shepherds at the cradle. It is, quite simply, some of Bach’s most attractively varied music, and a magnificent counter-balance to Handel’s Messiah at this time of year.