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  • The Coronation of King George II / The King's Consort · Robert King
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The Coronation of King George II / The King's Consort · Robert King Import


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Audio CD, Import, November 13, 2001
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Editorial Reviews

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George II's coronation, which is depicted on this Hyperion two-CD set, took place in 1727 amid chaotic circumstances, and it's hard to know how much of the surviving documentation indicates what actually happened as against what was meant to happen. So Robert King's musical recreation of the event is inevitably a mixture of scholarship and speculation, throwing in items from past coronation ceremonies (like Purcell's I was glad) on challengeable evidence. But never mind. If you take this exercise in broad terms--and you should--it's brilliantly effective, with clear, sharp-edged performances of the four coronation anthems (including Zadok the Priest) that Handel definitely did write for the event. Along with that is what would in 1727 have been old music by Tallis, Gibbons, and Blow, plus spatial sound effects of grand processions, fanfares, shouts of acclamation, and the bells of London, all recorded in rural locations west of Swindon, because the real thing is drowned out these days by 21st-century traffic noise. One reservation: it's all a touch staid with overly stately tempi and less atmosphere than it could happily sustain. You just don't believe it's happening in Westminster Abbey (nor is it: most of the material was recorded in a Lutyens church in Hampstead Garden Suburb, north London). Also, over two CDs, the endless trumpet fanfares get a little wearing. But that's probably authentic. And since the second CD comes free, there's nothing to complain about. --Michael White

Disc: 1
1. Church Bells: Tolling Bell of 'Westminster Abbey'
2. Coronation of George II (England): Trumpet fanfare 1
3. Coronation of George II (England): Drum procession 1
4. Coronation of George II (England): Vivat
5. Coronation of George II (England): Trumpet fanfare 2
6. O Lord, Grant the King a Long Life, anthem for soloists, chorus & orchestra
7. Occasional Oratorio, HWV 62: Grand Instrumental Procession (as used for coronation of William II)
8. I was glad when they said unto me, anthem for alto, tenor, bass, chorus, string & organ, Z. 19
9. Coronation of George II (England): God save King George (1)
10. Coronation of George II (England): Trumpet fanfare 3
See all 16 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Coronation of George II (England): Trumpet fanfare 4
2. Behold, O God Our Defender for soloists, chorus & orchestra
3. Coronation of George II (England): Trumpet fanfare 5
4. Coronation of George II (England): God save the King
5. The King Shall Rejoice, coronation anthem No. 2 for chorus & orchestra, HWV260: 'The King shall rejoice', Chorus
6. The King Shall Rejoice, coronation anthem No. 2 for chorus & orchestra, HWV260: 'Exceeding glad shall he be', Chorus
7. The King Shall Rejoice, coronation anthem No. 2 for chorus & orchestra, HWV260: 'Glory and great worship', Chorus
8. The King Shall Rejoice, coronation anthem No. 2 for chorus & orchestra, HWV260: 'Alleluja', Chorus
9. Second Service (Verse Service), for 1-5 voices & organ: Te Deum (from the Second Service)
10. Coronation of George II (England): Trumpet fanfare 6
See all 23 tracks on this disc

Product Details

  • Performer: George Frideric Handel, Henry Purcell, Thomas Tallis, Orlando Gibbons John Blow
  • Audio CD (November 13, 2001)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Hyperion UK
  • ASIN: B00005QIT8
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #284,400 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By William on February 28, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Well, this is just fascinating! Absolutely fascinating! (Sorry for repeating myself, it's a point that I just cannot seem to stress enough!! lol)
Of course, I'm a little biased too, towards the content of this compilation (being a monarchist), yet the musical and historical value of such a recording cannot be effectively conveyed in words. I will admit that I am only vaguely familiar with the sound of the king's consort choir and orchestra, but as they say, first impressions last, and this was a great first impression.
I am usually quite partial to the recordings of the King's college choir, but the King's consort choir has certainly proved an unbelieveable equality to me, with little of the usual vibrato in the high soprano lines, that tend to get on my nerves.
Of particular interest, are the coronation anthems, that Handel actually composed for the purpose of this very coronation. They are all wonderfully portrayed in all their splendour and grandeur, and yes, with a blaze of Handelian glory. They are all enjoyable to listen to, with the typical lyricism and melodious writings of Handels pen.
More unfamiliar, are anthems composed for earlier coronations and incorporated into the service for King George II. This is a great insight to the earlier styles of the renaissance anthem writing. At times they do seem to anticipate choral masterpieces of a later 'baroque' generation.
I must urge all to try this recording, and experience the pomp and ceremony of the crowning of the British Monarch.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a good reference to understand the musical environment in Handels times'. Royal compositions are impressive and the musicians made their better efforts to satisfy the kingdoms of their benefactors.
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