Missa Solemnis in The Financial Times
The Financial Times, 7th December 2013
(SDG718)

718 cover low res

'an incandescent performance'

*****
Disparate in style and well-nigh impossible in its demands, Beethoven's solemn mass is a triumph of aspiration over achievement. Yet the Monteverdi Choir and Orchestre Revolutionnaire et Romantique, recorded at the Barbican a year ago, succeed where most fail. Gardiner's intensity of phrasing - speed never the enemy of expression - combines with rapid-fire choral entries and a radiant quartet of soloists to create an incandescent performance, inhibited only by a pale violin solo in the Sanctus.