"John Butt has created the best Samson ever." BBC Music Magazine ★★★★★ "Another John Butt Spectacular." The Scotsman ★★★★★ Editor‘s & Critics’ Choice, Gramophone: December 2021 BBC Music Magazine Record of the Month: December 2019
Symphony – Andante
Chorus – Awake the trumpet’s lofty sound (Large Chorus)
Chorus – Awake the trumpet’s lofty sound (Small Chorus)
Aria – Total eclipse
Aria and chorus – Return, O God of hosts!
Aria – To fleeting pleasures make your court
Chorus – Hear, Jacob’s God (Large Chorus)
Chorus – Hear, Jacob’s God (Small Chorus)
Aria – Thus when the sun
Aria – How willing my paternal love
Aria – Let the bright seraphim
Chorus – Let their celestial concerts all unite (Large Chorus)
Chorus – Let their celestial concerts all unite (Small Chorus)
Handel’s mighty oratorio
In this pioneering recording Dunedin Consort presents a brand new performing version of one of Handel’s greatest dramatic works, Samson, in its earliest performed version of 1743. Drawing upon new research into the Handelian chorus, this landmark recording presents the choruses in two alternative forms: firstly, in a large-scale chorus with children added to the soprano line, and secondly, with the choruses sung by the soloists alone. Neither of these choral solutions has been attempted before.
This powerful oratorio – an opera in all but name – features soloists Sophie Bevan, Matthew Brook, Mary Bevan, Hugo Hymas, Fllur Wyn, Vitali Rozynko and Jess Dandy, with Joshua Ellicott in the title role. Matching the revelatory historical practice begun in its award-winning recording of Messiah (Dublin Version, 1742), the soloists lead their sections to unite the solo and choral forces, creating a highly effective and cohesive sound. With rich orchestration and highlights such as ‘Let the bright seraphim’ and ‘Total eclipse’, Samson is Dunedin Consort’s most ambitious undertaking to date.
Note: Customers have the option to download the large or small chorus versions of the oratorio in its entirety. The Physical CD features the larger choruses. Purchasers of the CD will be entitled to a free download of the small chorus version upon receipt of purchase. The smaller choruses are also available in isolation for free download to all customers.