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American Record Guide: (09-10/2020) 
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Château de Versailles

Code-barres / Barcode : 3770011431212


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Reviewer: Michelle Thomson

This is a fine performance of the Vespers, filmed at the Royal Chapel at Versailles and making good use of its various upper reaches for the positioning of solo voices. The choir is smallish (about 40 singers) but incisive and strong; the orchestra is first-rate (barring a bit of "cadential frenzy" at the ends of numbers, sometimes slightly beyond the bounds of taste. And Raphael Pichon conducts it all with a sort of splendid eagerness, drawing his hands up from beneath as though he were lifting the entire ensemble by its lowest voices. All the soloists are excellent (tenors especially), and when the instrumentalists are granted opportunities to shine (in the 'Sonata sopra Sancta Maria' and the 'Ave maris stella' particularly), they take them with alacrity. I have not seen John Eliot Gardiner's video Vespers, but I would be surprised if it surpassed this one.


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