Missa Solemnis   (Bruno Kittel)            (2-St Laurent Studio YSL 78-090)
Item# C1124
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Product Description

Missa Solemnis   (Bruno Kittel)            (2-St Laurent Studio YSL 78-090)
C1124. MISSA SOLEMNIS, recorded 1928, w.Bruno Kittel Cond. Berlin Phil., Bruno Kittel Choir, w.Lotte Leonard, Emmy Land, Eleanor Schlosshauer-Reynolds, Anton Maria Topitz, Eugen Transky, Wilhelm Guttmann, Hermann Schey & Wilfred Hanke; Die Himmel R�hmen des Ewingen Ehre (both Beethoven). (Canada) 2�St Laurent Studio YSL 78-090. [A real discovery here is the contralto Eleanor Schlosshauer-Reynolds, glorious of voice and transcendent in musicality!] Transfers by Yves St Laurent.


�The first recording of the MISSA SOLEMNIS was cut in 1928 by the Berlin Philharmonic led by Bruno Kittel on eleven Polydor 78s, interchanging a total of seven soloists througout the various movements. Kittel was known primarily as a choral director, and the excellence of his choir was acclaimed throughout Europe and preserved in two superb recordings of the Beethoven Ninth by Fried (also 1928) and Furtw�ngler (1943). Alas, left to his own devices, and as one of Hitler�s favorite (and apparently compliant) musicians, his fame was tarnished by reportedly leading Nazi-commissioned and-themed works and by a 1941 Mozart REQUIEM recording in which he excised all possible references (Zion, Jerusalem) to the Jewish roots of Christianity�.As would be expected, the choral singing is rich and forceful (except for a brief blurred Osanna fugetto), and despite dynamic compression, Kittel builds and relaxes his climaxes convincingly. Balances mostly are surprisingly good, even though the soloists occasionally are too prominent and a fair amount of overload distortion obscures the instrumental forces in the loudest passages. Generally, Kittel's leadership is sober and meditative�.The work reaches its emotional peak with an extraordinarily measured 23 minute �Credo�, in which the shimmering second section, �Et incarnatus est�, seems magically suspended in time and effectively sets an aura for the remainder in which drama is subsumed by reverence, somewhat spoiled only by a bland violin solo in the �Benedictus� and a flaccid orchestral fugue in the �Agnus Dei� � although the final timpani strokes are chillingly pronounced. Kittel�s deliberate approach set the pace for many others to come.�

- Peter Gutmann, Classical Notes

�[The] singers are all first-rate and include the soprano Lotte Leonard, one the most popular German concert performers of the period�.Bruno Kittel�s choir was one of the finest in the land.�

- Rob Cowan

�Each of these disks, from Canadian engineer Yves St Laurent� [feature] St Laurent's natural transfer � made without filtering, like all his dubbings � it is easy to listen to, despite the surface noise.�

- Tully Potter, CLASSICAL RECORD QUARTERLY, Summer, 2011