Handel: Acis and Galatea; Baroque Arias

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

LABELS: Decca Serenata
WORKS: Acis and Galatea; Baroque Arias
PERFORMER: Joan Sutherland, Peter Pears, Owen Brannigan, David Galliver St Anthony Singers/Philomusica of London/Adrian Boult
CATALOGUE NO: 436 227-2 ADD (1959/60/81)
For all its shortcomings — Sutherland rather leaden, with the male leads all at times struggling — this recording manages to communicate the wit of Gay’s libretto and the easy sophistication of Handel’s music, not least thanks to Boult’s deft direction: Sutherland and Pears singing ‘Happy We’ is pure pleasure. Sutherland’s virtuoso accounts of Baroque arias — including Arne’s dazzling ‘The Soldier Tir’d’ — make a welcome filler. William Humphreys-Jones