[ Harmonia Mundi / CD ]
Release Date: Friday 28 February 2020
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Janáček's choral works draw on an extremely rich repertory of folksongs and folk tales. The composer seized on idioms from Bohemian and Moravian traditions, with their characteristic folk dances and rustic nursery rhymes, and on the recently published Moravian Duets of his compatriot Antonín Dvořák, to convey a mixture of emotions, forever shifting between cheerfulness and melancholy, like his subdued harmonies. Here we witness the birth of a musical language which, though deliberately rooted in central Europe, has projected for nearly a century the aura of a universal sentiment.
"Cappella Amsterdam produces a superb choral sound: firm in ensemble and suitably heroic in the higher tenor lines. It clearly identifies closely with this repertoire and captures the off-beat humour of the 1926 version of Nursery Rhymes...this is an attractive recording, and beautifully performed."
"Daniel Reuss has a good feeling for the cut and colour of Janacek's phrases and the chorus are admirable in making all his originalities fall naturally into place" (Gramophone)
"Janácek's choral music is not widely performed on the international stage, but there is much to enjoy in this programme...a much more personal voice comes through in such pieces as The Wolf's Trail and a sequence of nursery rhymes, accompanied by instrumental ensemble and performed here with character and distinction."