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Bach: Saint Matthew Passion, BWV 244

February 16, 1999 | Format: MP3

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Song Title Artist
Time
Popularity Prime  
30
1
7:45
30
2
0:58
30
3
1:19
30
4
0:32
30
5
0:13
30
6
0:15
30
7
0:17
30
8
1:53
30
9
0:11
30
10
1:17
30
11
3:52
30
12
1:43
30
13
3:25
30
14
1:23
30
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1:40
30
16
1:27
30
17
1:53
30
18
2:00
30
19
3:07
30
20
5:06
30
21
1:01
30
22
1:32
30
23
4:29
30
24
1:43
30
25
1:37
30
26
3:01
30
27
4:49
30
28
1:51
30
29
8:41
30
30
4:06
30
31
1:20
30
32
0:10
30
33
1:30
Disc 2
30
1
6:37
30
2
1:50
30
3
0:49
30
4
0:05
30
5
0:16
30
6
0:21
30
7
0:14
30
8
1:30
30
9
5:29
30
10
0:04
30
11
0:21
30
12
0:27
30
13
1:39
30
14
0:39
30
15
0:10
30
16
0:19
30
17
3:28
30
18
2:24
30
19
1:34
30
20
3:11
30
21
1:26
30
22
0:04
30
23
0:16
30
24
0:08
30
25
0:28
30
26
2:23
30
27
1:22
30
28
0:29
30
29
0:43
30
30
2:21
30
31
7:08
30
32
2:53
30
33
9:12
30
34
16:16
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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: February 16, 1999
  • Release Date: February 16, 1999
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Sony Classical
  • Copyright: Originally released 1963 SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 2:32:42
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B001UC18OE
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #88,272 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

One of my favorite Oratorios.
Lois Hill
The music is unbelievably beautiful but he makes it more so with his musical pace and control.
Carolyng
The music and singing are wonderful.
InlinePaul

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By J. C. Woods on June 11, 2000
Format: Audio CD
The linear notes tell us: "Leonard Bernstien did not record a great deal of baroque music. His career blossumed at precisely the same time big-orchestra performances of Bach and Handel were falling into a curious disrepute." Not so curious if you ask me. Getting the NYPO to play baroque is a bit like getting an elephant to dance en point. I really shouldn't criticize: the fact Bernstein could get the elephant up at all shows his genius. Anyway, I cannot believe the total difference between this recording and the Koopman or the Herrewege is simply that this is in English and the others are in German. Is German a prettier language than English? I think not. Certainly understanding the language is helpful. Maybe the translation is bad. Is it the cutting of the Passion? Bernstein loses the anointing of the feet at Bethany and thereby loses one of my favorite Arias "Bub und Reu." Is that what I find so disappointing? I don't know. All I know is I feel a lightness in other interpretations I miss here. This is purely subjective, I gladly admit. Perhaps had a known this interpretation first and followed it up with the Koopman or the Herrewege I would have an entirely difference assessment.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Bob S. VINE VOICE on April 17, 2003
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I've waited 20 years to find this re-release of a 60's recording that I'd worn out 2 sets of LPs playing. In my view this is one of Bernstein's finest- every tempo, every dynamic, every nuance flows from his soul to his baton and to the orchestra, chorus, and soloists. Certainly not for the purists given the cuts and modern orchestral treatment, but for pure listening bliss this is the recording to own. His (all too) brief explanation of this work at the end exposes his emotional involvement with this masterful music and is a delightful bonus that was originally included as a 7" LP in the set. Bravo to Sony for their Bernstein re-release program!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By H. Keith Grosjean on February 21, 2000
Format: Audio CD
This is one the great choral works of all time and to be able to hear it in English by an ensemble such as this is an experience no one should miss. The explanation by the conductor at the end of the work is enlightening and adds greatly to the enjoyment of this wonderful musical work.
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42 of 53 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 23, 2002
Format: Audio CD
The true test of this recording is comparing the last chorus with other versions by Klemperer, Gardiner, Ritcher, Koopman, et al. Why?
Because Bach was wrenching all the drama he could from that last
expression of the sorrow of life of Jesus. "Wir setzen uns mit Tranen nieder" says it all. And Bernstein's version comes in at the slowest.
Over nine minutes! Koopman at six. And the cold, heartless Gardiner
even faster. Gardiner has no concept of the meaning and glorious
passion in this music. Don't buy his Bach recordings. Listen only to
this last chorus' first phrase and how gut-wrenching it is! Bernstein
understood this great masterpiece, and his version is worth buying
just for this chorus.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 8, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Music is a dynamic art and must adapt in many ways with each individual performance. I really don't place much value in the effort to perform a composition only by the "original" or "period" standards. If one lays aside such bias, one may experience the muscial beauty and spiritual blessing of this performance of a sacred classic. I speak German as a second language, but thoroughly enjoyed hearing it in English. After all, one's mother tongue is always a more powerful medium. English draws us closer to the message of Christ's atoning death which Bach sought to share in this masterpiece. This recording is very passionate and moving. Kudos also to the staff at Sony who remastered the originals onto CD. I had no idea that the performance was from the early 60's until I read it. The sound quality is tops.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 8, 1999
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a marvelous performance which breathes life and despair from beginning to end. Bernstein's reading must take its place alongside the Klemperer recording as the most moving performance of the work in the catalog. Although I admire the period performance by Gardiner, this recording is not shackled by an academic straight jacket of politically correct "authentic" instruments. Bernstein once again brought out the best in the musicians under his baton. His brief dissertation on the work is of course compelling, especially his comments on the opening chorus.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By "kek5" on August 31, 2000
Format: Audio CD
I bought this version of the St. Matthew Passion because it is sung in English, and there are few recordings of this Passion in English. Initially, I was somewhat disappointed. Being recorded live, the blemishes in ensemble and singing are caught, and it is a shame so many arias are not included (due to the nature of the performance). Nonetheless, upon repeated listenings, I find myself enjoying this St. Matthew more and more. What became clearer to me now is that Bernstein's personal commitment and (forgive me) passion lifts the performance, and while this is by no means a purist's version, it is a long way from the plodding and mannered performances of the old German school. This is a hard performance to recommend without reservation; if you are retentive about period performance practices or unable to live without the missing arias, this is not the CD for you. If, you are a Bernstein fan or just prefer Bach sung in English, this is a good purchase.
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