To mark its 20th birthday, Hyperion has had the bright idea of repackaging (and in some cases remastering) 20 of its most successful discs and offering them at mid price for a limited period. This Vivaldi CD was originally issued as the first in an ongoing series of choral music. Vivaldi's choral works? Yes, he by no means restricted himself to brilliantly virtuoso instrumental writing, and he could turn his attention to more devout matters when required, to equally thrilling effect. Track 1, the opening of the Magnificat, knocks your socks off with its unique mix of crazy harmonies and ethereal melodic lines. King has assembled a group of singers and players who appreciate the real worth of this much misunderstood figure. As well as the Magnificat itself (which is full of delightful surprises, not least the divine soprano duet, "Esurientes", sung by Susan Gritton and Lisa Milne), there is the fervent and joyous Dixit Dominus and a profoundly moving Credo. The documentation lives up to the standards of the performances, including an excellent note by Vivaldi expert Michael Talbot. The music here is up with the best of Vivaldi's output, more than capable of standing alongside his more popular concertos. The temporary price reduction can only be an additional incentive to snap up this disc. --Harriet Smith
This disc only contains the surround mix. There is no stereo mix included.
Do not buy.
This all prevents the disc from getting five starts from me, but it shouldn't prevent you from buying the disc. (And for all I know, maybe it's just my machine that has this problem.)