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Hyperion Records

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The Choice of Hercules by Paolo de Matteis (1662-1728)
Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford / Bridgeman Art Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDA67298
St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead Garden Suburb, London, United Kingdom
Release date: April 2002
Total duration: 96 minutes 36 seconds

'The Choice of Hercules is one of Handel's best-kept secrets … Robert King and his expert team evidently relish the work’s hedonistic charms' (The Daily Telegraph)

'Robert King is a fine Handelian, in that he uses the best players and some of the more characterful singers around … some very fine singing’ (Early Music Review)

'Fine notes and full texts complete yet another example of King’s superlative recording activities – a must for Handelians' (American Record Guide)

'And about time too! An admirable addition to Robert King's ongoing Hyperion Handel series' (International Record Review)

'A delightful sequence of 24 brief numbers telling the story of Hercules making his choice between Virtue and Pleasure … Robert King brings out the unquenchable freshness of invention that Handel retained even in his last years, with the choir and players of The King’s Consort consistently responsive and resilient'' (The Guardian)

'Susan Gritton and Alice Coote are exquisite as Pleasure and Virtue. A delightful rarity, coupled with an appealing anthem by Handel's English contemporary Maurice Greene' (The Sunday Times)

'a glowing and altogether irresistible sound' (Fanfare, USA)

'Another major release from one of our most accomplished Baroque outfits' (Organists' Review)

'This is a lovely performance. All the soloists are in exceptionally good voice … Robert King directs proceedings with his spry confidence' (The Evening Standard)

'The confident performance by The King’s Consort is compelling and full of refinement, catching the music’s flavour and drama brilliantly' (Cathedral Music)

'Strong choral singing and excellent orchestral playing add to the merits of a performance that bears all the characteristic hallmarks of Robert King’s stylish, vital direction … Strongly recommended' (Goldberg)

'especially enjoyable' (Gay Times)

'this new recording of the little-known Choice Of Hercules is a welcome addition to their discography … As usual with The King’s Consort recordings, the playing of the musicians is tight and balanced, with a fine equilibrium between soloists, chorus and orchestra' (MusicWeb International)

'In its colour and tunefulness this is extracted essence of Handel, immaculately performed by Robert King’s finely disciplined forces' (Musical Opinion)

'excellent soloists … nicely pointed playing and singing from orchestra and chorus' (Early Music)

'le King’s Consort est énergique et vif … Le chœr est remarquable, surtout dans la vaillance grace à la magnifique présence de ses basses … Cette version surpasse largement celles qui l’ont précedée' (Répertoire, France)

The Choice of Hercules, HWV69
composer
1751

No 1: Sinfonia  [1'18]

Other albums featuring this work
'Handel: English Arias' (CDH55419)
Handel: English Arias
MP3 £4.99FLAC £4.99ALAC £4.99Buy by post £5.50 CDH55419  Helios (Hyperion's budget label)  
'The James Bowman Collection' (KING3)
The James Bowman Collection
Buy by post £13.99 (ARCHIVE SERVICE) This album is not yet available for download KING3  Super-budget price sampler — Archive Service  

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