Magazine article Czech Music

George Frideric Handel

Magazine article Czech Music

George Frideric Handel

Article excerpt

Oratorio Arias

Adam Plachetka-baritone, Czech Ensemble Baroque Orchestra & Choir, Katerina Knezikova.-soprano, Roman Valek-conductor.

Text: Czech, English, German, French. Recorded: Aug.-Sep. 2012, Basilica of St. Prokop, Trebic.

Released: 2012. TT: 70:47. DDD. CD Supraphon SU 4116-2.

The first disc recorded by Adam Plachetka for Supraphon pleasantly surprised me for two reasons. Firstly, owing to the baritone's take on Handel's music; secondly, as regards the album's conception. Mr. Plachetka has of late begun to be compared with Ildebrando D'Arcangelo and this CD serves as proof that this claim is basically justified. His voice has a beautiful colour, a distinct personality of its own, the flexibility of youth, and he doesn't just sing the notes. Plachetka is truly exceptional among Czech singers, and when it comes to the European context, he is already well above average in his category. Nevertheless, although his delivery is remarkable, it would be salutary to draw attention to his sometimes excessive vibrato and the power of his vocal expressiveness ... As for the latter: instead of the obligatory opera or oratorio recital, in co-operation with the conductor Roman Valek he chose a block solution--a selection of instrumental, solo (including recitatives) and choral pads from the oratorios Alexander's Feast, Messiah, Adis and Galatea and Judas Maccabeus. This is a solution not quite common, daunting, and so risky a step as to warrant praise. …

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