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Hyperion Records

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The Leipzig Thomaskirche (1735) by Johann Georg Schreiber (1676-1750)
AKG London
Track(s) taken from CDH55393
Recording details: September 1999
St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead Garden Suburb, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Ben Turner
Engineered by Philip Hobbs
Release date: May 2000
Total duration: 11 minutes 22 seconds

'There is no respect in which the vocal and instrumental performances or the recording fail to do justice to a composer whose revival is long overdue. I strongly recommend you to discover this for yourselves. Bravo, Hyperion! … the second release in the Bach Contemporaries series reveals a composer of imagination and flair. The King's Consort give these rarities outstanding performances' (Gramophone)

'Thrilling to the senses. This is an auspicious continuation of a series which deserves to do very well indeed' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Performances are excellent. Highly recommended' (Early Music Review)

'Robert King draws fine singing and playing from his ensemble. The soloists are uniformly excellent … Knüpfer is a real discovery—full marks to all concerned … the combination of education and pleasure is irresistible' (International Record Review)

'Beautifully executed' (Classic CD)

'The performances are immaculate' (Fanfare, USA)

'Recomendados' (CD Compact, Spain)

Vom Himmel hoch, da komm ich her
? 1673
author of text
chorale lines and biblical quotations

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The Christmas concerto Vom Himmel hoch, da komm ich her (‘From heaven on high I come here’) is one of Knüpfer’s late works, as are probably all his grandly scored sacred concertos. On the copy, which is unique in the Grimma collection, is written the date 1673, which is probably when it was composed. The composition is textually based on a free combination of chorale lines and Biblical quotations, and arranged as a dialogue between the choir of the angels, set for three sopranos and three violins, and the choir of the shepherds, scored for three lower vocal and three instrumental parts. The two choirs unite towards the end of the work in a concluding chorus, praising God. Knüpfer symbolizes the otherworldly quality and unfathomable beauty of the angelic song by a rigorous canon set to the words ‘Ehre sei Gott in der Höhe’ (‘Glory to God in the highest’).

from notes by Peter Wollny © 2000
English: Viola Scheffel

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