Haydn: Die Schöpfung

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

WORKS: Die Schöpfung
PERFORMER: Judith Blegen, Lucia Popp (soprano), Thomas Moser (tenor), Kurt Ollmann (baritone), Kurt Moll (bass); Bavarian RSO & Chorus/Leonard Bernstein
CATALOGUE NO: 453 031-2 (1987)
Two highly recommended Creations, both live recordings from the mid-Eighties of faultless performances from orchestra and chorus alike. Harnoncourt has the edge in soloists. Holl is grave and commanding as Raphael and doubles as a fresh, bright-eyed Adam. Gruberová is less successful at distinguishing between Gabriel and Eve, but is rich and well-modulated in both roles, while Protschka is a winningly ardent Uriel. Sweet-toned Moser is the best of Bernstein’s soloists, with Moll and Popp on fine form. The disappointment is Blegen, who lacks the confidence and poise that otherwise distinguishes the recording. While Bernstein can incline towards the weighty, Harnoncourt’s sense of pace is unerring and makes the Vienna recording the pick of the two. Christopher Wood