VIDEO

LABEL: TEL-AD
CATALOG NUMBER: N/A
UPC NUMBER: N/A
NUMBER OF TAPES: 1
RUNNING TIME: 117 MIN.
YEAR RECORDED: 1999
RELEASE DATE: OCTOBER 12, 1999
ASPECT RATIO: 1.33:1
AUDIO: UNKNOWN
REGION: N/A
CONDUCTOR: FRANCISCO DE ARAUJO
ORCHESTRA: LA CAMERATA ORCHESTRA
CHOIR: LA CAMERATA NUOVE
SOPRANO: BEVERLY HOCH
MEZZO-SOPRANO: DONNA STEPHENSON
TENOR: GENE TUCKER
BASS: JONATHAN DEUTSCH
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SITE RATING:  8/10
SITE REVIEW:  Another Messiah which deserves to be released on DVD/Blue-Ray, this 1999 performance by the little-known Franciso de Araujo and La Camerata Orchestra and Choir is worthy of watching.  Although it perpetuates some common myths about the creation of Messiah in a spoken prologue, the performance is very good, with some caveats.  The La Camerata forces are small, chamber-sized, but wonderfully balanced, with good recorded sound, as well.  Director Francisco de Araujo is an energetic, expressive conductor, and he brings out the best in all involved.  Soloists include tenor Gene Tucker, who has a finely balanced heroic tone, although he struggles with slight pitch and melisma issues.  Soprano and mezzo-soprano Beverly Hoch and Donna Stephenson enjoy a fine rapport, and have similarly very good, if not world-class talents, offset to a great degree by their warm personalities.  Bass Jonathan Deutsch has a booming, hollow-chested tone which I did not enjoy, but I found great interest in watching him perform due to a strange coincidence: he bears a strong resemblance to horror icon Boris Karloff - with his deep set eyes, dark eyebrows, and silver, swept-back hair creating an odd, deja-vu sensation.  Interspersed at odd intervals throughout the performance are on-site videos of various Christian locals in the Holy Land, from Christ's birthplace, to his reputed burial site, each notated with on-screen identifiers.  The production values are quite high, and the performances on the whole are fine enough to recommend this video to all.


The Compleat Messiah All Content Copyright 2015 Bret D. Wheadon
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