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  • Beethoven: Missa Solemnis in D, Op. 123
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Beethoven: Missa Solemnis in D, Op. 123


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Audio CD, February 28, 2012
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Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": KyrieHeather Harper 8:08Album Only
listen  2. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Gloria: Gloria in excelsis DeoHeather Harper 5:09$0.89  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Gloria: Qui tollisHeather Harper 4:51$0.89  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Gloria: QuoniamHeather Harper 7:07$0.89  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Credo: Credo in unum DeumHeather Harper 4:28$0.89  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Credo: Et incarnatus estHeather Harper 5:08$0.89  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Credo: Et resurrexitHeather Harper 9:35Album Only
listen  8. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Sanctus: SanctusHeather Harper 5:14$0.89  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Sanctus: BenedictusHeather Harper 9:44Album Only
listen10. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Agnus Dei: Agnus DeiHeather Harper 5:46$0.89  Buy MP3 
listen11. Mass in D Major, Op. 123, "Missa Solemnis": Agnus Dei: Dona nobis pacemHeather Harper 9:17Album Only


Product Details

  • Performer: Cologne Radio Choir, Heather Harper, Julia Hamari, Sven Olof Eliasson, Peter Meven
  • Orchestra: Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: William Steinberg
  • Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Audio CD (February 28, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: International Classical Artist
  • ASIN: B006ICUJ5A
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #427,694 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By MPG1001 on March 11, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
William Steinberg could never have made this recording in America. The expense and time involved in preparing and recording Missa Solemnis would have been beyond the resources of a small label like Command, and DGG gave preference to its house conductors Karajan and Böhm. Such productions however were a fixture of the German radio studios, and Cologne Radio (now WDR) provided Steinberg both with sufficient rehearsal time and a well-matched group of soloists. In fact these singers are so obviously listening to each other and balancing their lines that they make the challenging vocal writing sound less effortful than usual. Harper is especially fine but there is not a dud in the lot.

Steinberg's preferences for firm rhythmic control and linear clarity allow him to be expressive without ever sounding indulgent. Textures are clear but not ideally so in the heaviest passages, since the producers apparently added a small amount of reverb to the acoustic. The timpanist, always an important feature in Steinberg's performances, is excellent. The overall sonic picture is wide range and vivid, with tape hiss present but not at all obtrusive. I would certainly place this version next to Klemperer's, aptly described by an Amazon reviewer as "possessed of a craggy grandeur," in the historical but still stereo category.

There are plenty of more modern recordings to choose from of course, and more historically informed ones - though Steinberg's lean and propulsive Beethoven is not as far removed as one might think.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Martin on May 20, 2013
Format: Audio CD
"It surprised me to learn that until now this 1973 performance of Beethoven's Missa Solemnis from the Cologne Radio archives had not been previously released on CD. This is a modern stereo recording with a top cast of soloists and a conductor who, in my opinion, is seriously underrated.

As noted by Lynn René Bayley, who reviewed this same release in just the last issue (Fanfare 35:5), Steinberg's tempos are on the fast side. Most performances of the work take somewhere between 76 and 80 minutes, with the even more expansive one by James Levine and the Vienna Philharmonic on Deutsche Grammophon taking 83 minutes spread over two discs.

While I sometimes find myself in disagreement with Bayley, in this case I resoundingly second her opinion. Despite Steinberg's accelerated pace, there's no sense of haste or breathlessness in this performance; the opposite, in fact, seems to be the case. There's a feeling of expansiveness and grandeur as the magnificent sound of the recording and the superb singing of soloists and choir open out to the vastness of the starry canopy. Even in the fastest and most strenuous passages, such as the closing pages of the Quoniam tu solus Sanctus, the choristers, unfazed, are borne aloft on eagles' wings. The soloists, with the possible exception of a slightly tremulous bass, Peter Meven, in the Agnus Dei, are magnificent. The Cologne orchestra, too, is splendid, and concertmaster Wolfgang Marschner gives a meltingly beautiful account of the violin solo in the Benedictus.

I keep coming back, though, to the recorded sound, which has the most amazing clarity and transparency, not to mention dynamic range.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By BK on September 1, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This recording is a treasure. We (my wife and I) had the honor and privilege to sing many
concerts under the baton of this great man, including the Missa Solemnis.

This recording should be a must for every serious choral conductor, singer and and
lover.
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As I listened to this, I found myself impressed on many counts: First, the 1973 recording is clearer and more spacious than many recent digital recordings. That is due no doubt partly to good engineering and partly a good acoustic venue. The choir, orchestra, and soloists are all very nicely balanced.

Second, Steinberg delivers the score with remarkable clarity and feeling as well, and great fidelity to the score. But as much as I have loved Steinberg's conducting in other music (in particular, his Boston Symphony recordings on DGG), what he does here seems just a little bit staid and lacking in the visceral excitement I hear in some of the best. In that respect, several in particular come to mind. Kubelik's live performance on the Orfeo label, from just 4 years after this, is also a wonderful and stirring performance. Toscanini's 1940 NBC live performance is available on both the Music and Arts label and the Guild label, and in both cases they have used the best modern technology to bring out all the detail possible in that historical recording. Ormandy's is also a committed and surprisingly exciting account; likewise, Norrington on the Hanssler label delivers a more "traditional" account than might be expected from him (that is, more musical and less involved with trying to make a point about historical performance practices), one that is also quite involving and exciting. Klemperer, on the other hand, and Bernstein on DGG, have also both sounded rather staid to me, though it's been too long since I heard the Bernstein to comment beyond that.

So to me, this would not seem to be a first choice. Instead, I think it's more for those who are really fascinated either by the Missa Solemnis or by Steinberg and want to collect all possible recordings.
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Beethoven: Missa Solemnis in D, Op. 123
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