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Recordings & Discussions of Other Vocal Works: Main Page | Motets BWV 225-231 | Mass in B minor BWV 232 | Missae Breves & Sanctus BWV 233-242 | Magnificat BWV 243 | Matthäus-Passion BWV 244 | Johannes-Passion BWV 245 | Lukas-Passion BWV 246 | Markus-Passion BWV 247 | Weihnachts-Oratorium BWV 248 | Oster-Oratorium BWV 249 | Chorales BWV 250-438 | Geistliche Lieder BWV 439-507 | AMN BWV 508-523 | Quodlibet BWV 524 | Aria BWV 1127

Mass in B minor BWV 232

Conducted by Seiji Ozawa

Recording

V-1

Mass in B minor BWV 232

Seiji Ozawa

Tokyo Opera Singers (Chorus Master: Peter Dijkstra) / Saito Kinen Orchestra

Soprano: Barbara Bonney; Alto: Angelika Kirchschlager; Tenor: John Mark Ainsley; Bass: Alastair Miles

Philips

Aug-Sep 2000

2-CD / TT: 102:32

Mass in B minor by S. Ozawa

Riccardo Nughes
wrote (March 8, 2002):
http://www.deccaclassics.com/newsandnewreleases/march2002/468363.html

Donald Satz wrote (March 8, 2002):
[To Riccardo Nughes] A new Mass in B minor on modern instruments is rare these days. I had no idea that Ozawa was into Bach.

Michael Grover wrote (March 8, 2002):
[To Donald Satz] Very interesting. Just when Suzuki thought he had the Japanese Bach market all to himself...

I wonder if this is Ozawa's first recording since leaving Boston?

Kirk McElhearn wrote (March 8, 2002):
[To Donald Satz] Indeed, this is a surprise.

Kirk McElhearn wrote (March 8, 2002):
[To Michael Grover] I don't follow him, but it may be indeed.

I should be getting a copy of this to review, so I'll let you all know. I listened to the real audio excerpts on the web site, and it sounds, well, un-HIP, but, given the soloists, it could be interesting.

Aryeh Oron wrote (March 9, 2002):
This recording of the Mass in B minor, which I have not yet heard, is not Ozawa first visit to Bach's land. He has already recorded the SMP (1977) with the same choir and orchestra. However, although this recording has good soloists, it is not recommended. Of course, it is not HIP, but for me this is not a problem, because I enjoy recordings from both schools. For a comparison I listened to the first CD of both Georg Solti and Ozawa recordings of the SMP. What a difference! Where Solti sounds warm, Ozawa leaves me cold. Where Solti is human, Ozawa is dry. With Solti one gets the feeling of structure, which is very important in this work; with Ozawa it goes nowhere - the whole is smaller than its parts. And most important, Solti sweeps everybody to a spirited performance. With Ozawa most of the participants sound uninvolved. In short, Solti is recommended for non-purists who want a good modern and large scale recording of SMP, full of vigour, energy and colours. Ozawa is one of the least satisfactory recordings of this monumental and sublime work I have ever heard. I do not have too high expectations from his recording of the Mass in B minor, but I am ready to accept that my assumption will be proved to be wrong. Maybe he has learnt something or two from his Japanese colleagues.

Robert Sherman wrote (March 9, 2002):
[To Aryeh Oron] Interesting observations on Solti. Have you compared his SMP with Richter's?

BTW I strongly recommend the Messiah Overture and Pastoral Symphony by Solti. The Chicago Symphony strings play not only with great skill and beautiful sound, but with delicacy and a genuine baroque conception that surprised me. I'm not too impressed by the rest of that recording though.

Aryeh Oron wrote (March 9, 2002):
[To Robert Sherman] With all the HIP-mania around, people tend to ignore or to under-estimate achievements of more conservative conductors, such as Solti, in the field of Bach's vocal works. I am so busy nowadays with the weekly cantata discussions, listening and making comparative review of the cantata under discussion, that no much listening time is left for similar enterprise with Bach's other vocal works. When the first cycle of the weekly cantata discussions is over, at the end of 2003, I hope to find more time for similar comparative reviews of Bach's other vocal works. Considering the huge amount of recordings of each of those works (B minor Mass, SMP, SJP, XO, etc.), many of them available, it seems as a gargantuan task to accomplish. I am playing with the idea of doing it in a kind of vertical analysis. For example, investigating the development in the approach to the Evangelist part, comparing performers from the same school, etc. But, as I have said, all these ideas will have to wait, although I do not mind that a courageous member will rise to the challenge.

In the meantime there are excellent reviews in the articles' Section of the Bach Cantatas Website: http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Articles/index.htm
- recordings of the B minor Mass, SMP and SJP by Teri Noel Towe, and period-instrument recordings of the B minor Mass by Donald Satz.

Regarding Richter, I prefer his first SMP to the second. Nevertheless, although he definitely belongs to the conservative camp, his approach is very different from either Solti or Ozawa. The reason I chose Solti for the short comparison is that both him and Ozawa are internationally renowned conductors, who have based most of the careers on performing works from the 19th and 20th centuries. Both seem apparently alien to Bach's music, and therefore it was interesting to see how they succeeded. My conclusion is that Solti made it and Ozawa did not.

Robert Sherman wrote (March 10, 2002):
[To Aryeh Oron] I like the idea of a "vertical approach" to the passions.

I've been doing something like that for years: Taking the best performances of each section of a major work and, where they can be fit together, synthezing an "ultimate" performance. Works surprisingly well.

I'm attaching my current track chart for the ultimate modern-instrument Messiah. It's been a colossal amount of work to audition about 30 recordings this way. But having done a lot of the preliminaries, i should now be able to do an allegedly-historical instrument performance relatively quickly.

Anyway, I'd welcome your comments on my modern-instrument selections. I'm also attaching my detailed comments on "I know that my redeemer liveth" this is my sample chapter, if I ever go for publication.

Kirk McElhearn wrote (March 10, 2002):
Robert Sherman wrote: < I've been doing something like that for years: Taking the best performances of each section of a major work and, where they can be fit together, synthezing an "ultimate" performance. Works surprisingly well. >
Yes, I agree that this would be the only way to examine such works. We would need to split them up into a few sections a week.

< I'm attaching my current track chart for the ultimate modern-instrument Messiah. It's been a colossal amount of work to audition about 30 recordings this way. But having done a lot of the preliminaries, i should now be able to do an allegedly-historical instrument performance relatively quickly. >
Attachments don't make it to the list. If you want to share it, you can put it on a web site, or send it directly to me, and I'll post it to the Files section of the list site on Yahoo.

Pablo Fagoaga wrote (March 10, 2002):
< Aryeh Oron wrote: Considering the huge amount of recordings of each of those works (B minor Mass, SMP, SJP, XO, etc.), many of them available, it seems as a gargantuan task to accomplish. I am playing with the idea of doing it in a kind of vertical analysis. For example, investigating the development in the approach to the Evangelist part, comparing performers from the same school, etc. But, as I have said, all these ideas will have to wait, although I do not mind that a courageous member will rise to the challenge. >
There is an interesting bonus CD that comes with Teldec's BACH 2000 suitcase. Althought it is far from the mega-comparison you are proposing, it's an interesting overview of the development of SMP's performance practice, with the method you propose.

It takes the very same excerpts (numbers 45 to 50)from different renditions by Spering, Mengelberg, Furtwängler, Richter, Solti and Koop. It is amazing how radically different the are.

The disk comes with some interesting (Regretably, not exhaustive) liner notes about each reading, and their differences.

Kirk McElhearn wrote (April 1, 2002):
http://www.mcelhearn.com/bach/bach_mass_ozawa.html

Note - this has not yet been released, so the Amazon links, other than the UK link, on the page go nowhere for now.


 

Mass in B minor BWV 232: Details
Recordings:
1900-1949 | 1950-1959 | 1960-1969 | 1970-1979 | 1980-1989 | 1990-1999 | 2000-2009 | 2010-2019 | Individual Movements
General Discussions:
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10 | Part 11 | Part 12 | Part 13 | Part 14 | Part 15 | Part 16 | Part 17
Systematic Discussions:
Part 1: Kyrie | Part 2: Gloria | Part 3: Credo | Part 4: Sanctus | Part 5: Agnus Dei | Part 6: Early Recordings | Part 7: Summary
Individual Recordings:
BWV 232 - C. Abbado | BWV 232 - Anonymous | BWV 232 - G.C. Biller | BWV 232 - F. Brüggen | BWV 232 - J. Butt | BWV 232 - S. Celibidache | BWV 232 - M. Corboz | BWV 232 - A. Eby | BWV 232 - G. Enescu | BWV 232 - E. Ericson | BWV 232 - D. Fasolis | BWV 232 - J.E. Gardiner | BWV 232 - C.M. Giulini | BWV 232 - N. Harnoncourt | BWV 232 - T. Hengelbrock | BWV 232 - P. Herreweghe | BWV 232 - R. Hickox | BWV 232 - R. Jacobs | BWV 232 - E. Jochum | BWV 232 - Ifor Jones | BWV 232 - K. Junghänel & Cantus Cölln | BWV 232 - H.v. Karajan | BWV 232 - R. King | BWV 232 - O. Klemperer | BWV 232 - S. Kuijken | BWV 232 - G. Leonhardt | BWV 232 - P. McCreesh | BWV 232 - M. Minkowski | BWV 232 - H. Müller-Bruhl | BWV 232 - S. Ozawa | BWV 232 - M. Pearlman | BWV 232 - K. Richter | BWV 232 - J. Rifkin | BWV 232 - H. Rilling | BWV 232 - H. Scherchen | BWV 232 - P. Schreier | BWV 232 - R. Shaw | BWV 232 - G. Solti | BWV 232 - M. Suzuki | BWV 232 - J. Thomas & ABS | BWV 232 - K. Thomas | BWV 232 - J.v. Veldhoven
Articles:
Mass in B Minor, BWV 232 [T. Noel Towe] | Bach’s B minor Mass on Period Instruments [D. Satz] | Like Father, Like Son [B. Pehrson]

Seiji Ozawa: Short Biography | Tokyo Opera Singers | Saito Kinen Orchestra | Recordings | BWV 232 - Ozawa | BWV 244 - Ozawa

Recordings & Discussions of Other Vocal Works: Main Page | Motets BWV 225-231 | Mass in B minor BWV 232 | Missae Breves & Sanctus BWV 233-242 | Magnificat BWV 243 | Matthäus-Passion BWV 244 | Johannes-Passion BWV 245 | Lukas-Passion BWV 246 | Markus-Passion BWV 247 | Weihnachts-Oratorium BWV 248 | Oster-Oratorium BWV 249 | Chorales BWV 250-438 | Geistliche Lieder BWV 439-507 | AMN BWV 508-523 | Quodlibet BWV 524 | Aria BWV 1127

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Last update: żApril 1, 2005 ż15:47:15