Handel: Israel in Egypt
Title:

Handel: Israel in Egypt

Artists:

Margaret Carpenter HaighMolly Netter, soprano
Daniel Moody, countertenor • Jacob Perry, tenor
Edward Vogel, baritone

Apollo’s Fire; Apollo’s Singers
Jeannette Sorrell, conductor

Release Date:

6th October 2023

Cat No:

AV2629

Price:

£13.49 (1CD deluxe | 28 page booklet)

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Summary:

“Handel gave us several versions of Israel in Egypt, and since 2017 we have Jeannette Sorrell’s … navigates this epic boldly, with edgy tempos, provocative dynamics and flawless pacing. Laurels also go to the band Apollo’s Fire, which restrains its customary unruliness in service of the project, and to the choir Apollo’s Singers, whose superb technique and dramatic flair, and the soloists drawn from its ranks, likewise serve Sorrell’s vision … Daniel Moody, with his sweetly delicate voice, heightens diction. This recording is a powerful argument” ★★★★ – BBC Music Magazine

“an excellent performance … a choir of impressive versatility. Apollo’s Fire, playing on period instruments, are magnificent.” – Gramophone

The performance is absolutely first rate. The recorded sound is warm and ingratiating. Rarely have I heard such highly disciplined choral singing and orchestral playing with excellent intonation and blend. The choral roulades are crystal clear. These are evidently singers who are right at home with the vocal demands of the period. The solo singing is highly polished and poised, with the emphasis on clarity rather than heft.” – American Rceord Guide

“…The period-instrument pioneer Jeannette Sorrell has made a series of judicious cuts throughout the manuscript while keeping the structure intact. The outcome is a 74-minute edition, full of incident and colour, that never flags. Sorrell’s concision is intelligent and her Apollo’s Fire ensemble and singers are fiercely engaged. Sorrell herself is a singular presence, striking her own path in Cleveland and showing there is room in one post-industrial city for two world-class orchestras playing in very different styles. This becomes my preferred version of Israel in Egypt… This celebration of redemption needs to be more widely performed, especially in times like these.” – The Critic Magazine

“Thrilling… Sorrell is a masterful musical storyteller. Her adaptation gives the work a coherent, compelling dramatic arc, brought off brilliantly by her singers and players.” – Seen & Heard International

“Artistic director Jeannette Sorrell adapted the Baroque score with certain modern expectations in mind. Her production retains Handel’s solemn opening, achieving a kind of period authenticity, but jettisons much of the repetition and inessential action in the rest of the music. The result is a lean and engaging dramatic arc — less than two hours — that translates 18th-century entertainment for the 21st century.” – Cleveland Classical

“A triumphant musical journey – a display of the startling abilities of the orchestra’s musical sounds and solo and choral performances. A powerful emotional journey and an audience pleaser.” – Cool Cleveland

“This recording is so compelling … a welcome addition to the recorded catalogue.” - Early Music America

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Apollo’s Fire’s founder and director Jeannette Sorrell is “a masterful musical storyteller” (Seen and Heard). The Maestra and her acclaimed baroque orchestra add to their distinguished AVIE discography that includes Handel’s Dixit Dominus and Messiah, with her own adaptation of the composer’s oratorio Israel in Egypt. This colourful orchestral showcase takes the listener on a biblical journey from the Israelites lamentations on the death of Joseph, to the frogs, locusts, disease and darkness that plague the Egyptians, to Moses’ miraculous parting of the Red Sea. Apollo’s Fire launch the album with a one-night-only performance of Israel in Egypt in their home base of Cleveland, on October 21, before travelling east for a collaboration of the work with the New York Philharmonic on October 25 and 26. Joining Sorrell and Apollo’s Fire are sopranos Margaret Carpenter Haigh and Molly Netter, countertenor Daniel Moody, tenor Jacob Perry, baritone Edward Vogel, and the Apollo’s Singers chorus.

Tracklist:

GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL (1685–1759)
Israel In Egypt
A Dramatic Oratorio (adaptation by Jeannette Sorrell)

PART I. Lamentations of the Israelites for the Death of Joseph, 1739
1. Sinfonia 2:08
2. The Sons of Israel do mourn 5:11
3. How is the mighty fall’n! 3:25
4. The righteous shall be had in everlasting remembrance 3:26 | Molly Netter | Jacob Perry | Edward Vogel
5. Their bodies are buried in peace 1:41

PART II. Exodus
6. Now there arose a new king over Egypt 0:24 | Jacob Perry
7. And the children of Israel sighed 2:01 | Daniel Moody
8. Then sent he Moses | Jacob Perry 0:28
9.  Their land brought forth frogs 2:37 | Daniel Moody
10. He spake the word 2:07
11. He gave them hailstones for rain 2:14
12. He sent a thick darkness over all the land 2:47
13. He smote all the first-born of Egypt 2:26
14. He rebuked the Red Sea 1:38
15. But the waters overwhelmed their enemies 1:17

PART III. Moses’ Song
16. Moses and the children of Israel sung this song unto the Lord 3:23
17. The Lord is my strength and my song 4:12 | Margaret Carpenter Haigh & Molly Netter
18. He is my God and I will prepare him a habitation 0:48
19. To God our strength, sing loud and clear 7:07 | Edward Vogel with Steven Marquardt, trumpet; Debra Nagy, oboe
20. The depths have covered them 2:17
21. Thy right hand, O Lord 1:21
22. The enemy said, I will pursue 2:15 | Jacob Perry
23. Thou didst blow with the wind | Margaret Carpenter Haigh 2:41
24. Who is like unto thee 1:15
25. Thou in thy mercy hast led forth thy people | Daniel Moody & Jacob Perry 2:42
26. The people shall hear, and be afraid 4:07
27. Thou shalt bring them in | Daniel Moody 2:46
28. The Lord shall reign forever and ever | chorus
For the horse of the Pharaoh | Jacob Perry
The Lord shall reign forever and ever | chorus
And Miriam the prophetess | Jacob Perry
The Lord shall reign forever and ever | chorus
Sing ye to the Lord | Molly Netter
The Lord shall reign forever and ever | chorus
The horse and his rider | Margaret Carpenter Haigh
The Lord shall reign forever and ever | chorus | 5:15

Total Duration: 74:13

Recorded 20 February, 2022 at First Baptist Church, Shaker Heights, Ohio
Recording Producer & Editor: Erica Brenner
Mastering and Engineer: Daniel Shores

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