BWV36: Schwingt freudig euch empor
BWV132: Wege, bereitet die Bahn!
BWV61: Nun komm, der heiden Heiland
Instrumental Suite after BWV699 & 659
Teru Dunn (soprano); Matthew
White (countertenor); John Tessier (tenor); Steven Pitkanen (baritone); Thomas
Goerz (bass) Arcadia Ensemble Kevin Mallon
Kevin Mallon and the Arcadia Ensemble hail from Canada, and they offer fresh
and well judged performances of these cantatas. Following the precedent of
Joshua Rifkin, they prefer, for the most part, to keep to a single voice
to a part. But they occasionally add a fuller ensemble, to telling effect.
Rhythmically light and texturally clear, Mallon judges tempi well, and his
singers are at one with his approach. John Tessier is a splendid Bach tenor,
for example, and his offerings in BWV36 warrant special mention. And soprano
Teri Dunn is equally fine.
St Mary Magdalene in Toronto has provided one of Naxos's most successful
recording acoustics, and the engineers are to be commended for the natural
perspectives and balances, which add a great deal to the effectiveness of
Mallon adds his own instrumental adaptation of the chorale preludes on Nun
komm, der Heiden Heiland. The ensemble performs with care and sensitivity,
so that the results are entirely appealing.
These Advent cantatas are deserving of a wider recognition, and this disc
serves them well.