This Welsh concert held in Brecon Cathedral from 25th October 2019 completely missed my notice, which is a shame because it looks like it was a great success, producing a number of positive reviews:
The Church Times (a review of concerts from the whole festival)
The performers were:
'The 24' University of York choir, conducted by Robert Hollingworth of (the great) 'I Fagiolini'
'Brecon Baroque' ensemble, led by esteemed period-violinist Rachel Podger.
Rebecca Lea soprano
Ciara Hendrick mezzo soprano
Nicholas Hurndall Smith tenor
George Clark baritone
Stuart O’Hara bass
Baritone George North - sung the 1st Lamentation.
The programme was:
ZWV19 Missa Dei Patris
ZWV53 Lamentation of Jeremiah, no.1 [performed after the Kyrie]
Rosary Sonata 'The Resurrection' [performed after the Credo]
The Arts Desk review written by Stephen Walsh was particularly eye-opening! Here's just an extract:
"But Zelenka isn’t just eccentric; his music is evidence of an acute but oddly conditioned ear. His orchestral sonorities are sometimes little short of incredible, twittering and groaning, long bass pedals that you expect to lead to finishes (as in Bach) but don’t, or the mercurial, quick-stepping fanfares that open the “Et Resurrexit”. Above all his expressive line and his use of vocal ornament are utterly personal, utterly riveting. His Lamentatio pro Die Mercurii Sancto, a setting of part of the biblical Lamentations, is painfully beautiful music unlike anything in Bach or Handel to my knowledge, with an exquisitely shaped vocal line and rich, dark string sonorities like echoes from a deep tomb."
and here's an extract from Cath Barton's review from Wales Arts:
"In his opening remarks, Hollingworth compared Zelenka to a d o g with a bone, and this certainly evoked the spirit of this music which seemed to pre-figure that of later composers. It was not without reason that Hollingworth pointed out that this was not Mozart; he could have mentioned Haydn and Rossini too."
The music of Zelenka strikes again,