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Andrew Hinds
30-09-2009, 09:12 PM
In 2009, a second version of Zelenka's wonderful Oratorio "I Penitenti al Sepolchro del Redentore" ZWV 63 (1736) has been produced by Zig-Zag (ZZT 090803).
The final aria (on the earlier CD on Panton in 1994 and later on Supraphon SU 3785-2 231), a plea for forgiveness involving the three soloists, full choir and orchestra is my "favourite track" - see my thread about this. It remains so.
On that CD, I had been content with the wonderful oboe and flute interaction and the reverential singing. The music had clear, forward momentum.
The new version has a strange, aethereal acoustic, less distinct oboe and flute parts, an operatic tenor and, for me, an unfortunate, significant change to "my" most beautiful tune.

So should I condemn this version? Not a bit of it! It turns out to be a fascinating reworking with much to be admired by a conductor who is full of ideas and who demands our attention. He clearly wishes to communicate how thrilling Zelenka can be both on this new CD and on his 2007 Zig-zag CD of Missa Votiva ZWV 18 (1739).

Now I have a serious question - can someone who has the original manuscript please tell me whether Zelenka wrote what Robert Hugo played in 1994 or is the authentic version what Vaclav Luks has given us in 2009?
Andrew Hinds