Paul McCreesh - Handel: L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato, 1740

Paul McCreesh - Handel: L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato, 1740
Album:
Handel: L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato, 1740
Duration:
02:21:08
Genre:
Recording Location:
Henry Wood Hall; St Paul's, Deptford; St Silas the Martyr, Kentish Town
Styles:
Choral
Recording Date:
May 11, 2013
Artist:
Release Date:
May 4, 2015

Handel's L'Allegro, il Penseroso, ed il Moderato was composed in 1740, and musically it shares much with Messiah, from a couple of years later. It has been comparatively neglected because, in several ways, it does not hang together as well as the later work. Based on a pair of poems by John Milton, L'Allegro (The Joyful One) and Il Penseroso (The Thoughtful One), with a third middle-of-the-road type added by Messiah librettist Charles Jennens (whom one satirist dubbed "Il Moderatissimo"), the work has been called an oratorio, a semi-oratorio, a pastoral ode, and more. It has no plot to speak of, and Handel kept revising the work to suit new performance demands, with the result that its performance tradition has accumulated a large number of random arias. This performance by conductor Paul McCreesh and his Gabrieli Consort & Players represents an attempt to reconstruct what Handel intended for the original performance, and far from being an exercise, this results in a concise work with a persuasive alternation of big, Messiah-like choruses and arias that embody the qualities depicted in the poems. For those who love Messiah and have never heard this work, sample the opening chorus-and-bass number on CD 2, "Populous cities please me then," with its big musical spaces. McCreesh introduces each of the work's three sections with an instrumental concerto, something well attested to in the original sources, and he benefits from an exceptionally strong group of soloists who capture the moods essential to what logic the work has. Strongly recommended for anyone interested in going beyond the Handelian basics.

Title/ComposerPerformerTime
Concerto Grosso in G major, Op. 6, No. 1
A tempo giusto / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh1:46
Allegro / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh1:44
Adagio / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:33
Allegro / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:37
Allegro / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:39
L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato
Part 1. Recitative Accompagnato. Hence! loathed Melancholy / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:03
Part 1. Recitative Accompagnato. Hence! vain deluding Joys / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh0:51
Part 1. Air. Come, thou goddess, fair and free / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh1:41
Part 1. Air. Come rather, goddess, sage and holy / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:54
Part 1. Air & Chorus. Haste thee, nymph, and bring with thee / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:14
Part 1. Air & Chorus. Come and trip it as you go / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:26
Part 1. Recitative Accompagnato. Come, pensive nun, devout and pure / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh1:01
Part 1. Air & Chorus. Come, but keep thy wonted state / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:01
Part 1. Recitative. Hence loathed Melancholy / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh0:27
Part 1. Air. Mirth, admit me of thy crew / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh4:04
Part 1. Recitative Accompagnato. First, and chief, on golden wing / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh0:55
Part 1. Air. Sweet bird, that shuns't the noise of folly / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh13:28
Part 1. Recitative. If I give thee honour due / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh0:10
Part 1. Air. Mirth, admit me of thy crew / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:26
Part 1. Air. Oft on a plat of rising ground / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh3:23
Part 1. Recitative. If I give thee honour due / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh0:14
Part 1. Air. Let me wander, not unseen / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh1:43
Part 1. Air & Chorus. Or let the merry bells ring round / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh3:45
Concerto Grosso in E minor, Op. 6, No. 3
Larghetto / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh1:19
Andante / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh1:25
Allegro / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh2:36
Polonaise - Andante / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh4:56
Allegro, ma non troppo / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh1:31
L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato
Part 2. Recitative Accompagnato. Hence vain deluding Joys / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh1:25
Part 2. Air. But O! sad virgin, that thy power / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh6:00
Part 2. Recitative. Thus, Night, oft see me in thy pale career / George Frederick HandelPaul McCreesh0:38

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