26 Mar 2024

Handel: Israel in Egypt – press reviews

Our Israel in Egypt tour isn’t over yet – we will perform Handel’s dazzling choral showpiece one more time with Peter Whelan at the Salzburg Festival on 21 July. But for now we can reflect on five spectacular concerts in Barcelona, Luxembourg, London, Paris and Hamburg.

The Observer: “The orchestral playing was buoyant as well as sensitive, the choral work dazzling. The soloists…excelled, but the choir took top honours: every word audible, every note, even when roared, bang in tune.” ★★★★★

The Times: “A thrilling performance…That sense of joy and release was vividly conveyed here under Peter Whelan’s direction.” ★★★★

Bachtrack:The Monteverdi Choir masters the art of effect and skill like no other ensemble. They strike with the impact of lightning – may they continue to do so for many more decades, or even better, “forever and ever.” ★★★

Scherzo: “A choir that proved unbeatable in the performance of this repertoire.”

Seen and Heard International: “The Choir is top: their pitching and diction is excellent; their musicality and disciplined passion is exemplary.”

El Punt Avui: “We know and recognize the greatness and excellence of many choirs, yet beyond these, there is the Monteverdi Choir, which finds in Handel’s compositions a suitable avenue for showcasing its talents and for transporting us to states of Being that are as indescribable as they are ineffable and sublime.” “A memorable interpretation of Handel’s Israel in Egypt performed by the Monteverdi Choir and the English Baroque Soloists under the skilled direction of Peter Whelan. The performance stood out not only for its technical excellence and the beauty of the solo voices but also for its deep spiritual impact.”

Conductor Peter Whelan also wrote about this project for The Arts Desk:

Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure of collaborating with the Monteverdi Choir and Orchestras on several occasions…Each experience has been enriching, reaffirming my admiration for this exceptional ensemble.

And Peter was joined by choir soloists Amy Wood and Nick Pritchard to talk about “hailstones, frogs and sexy trills” on Jon Jacob’s Thoroughly Good Classical Music podcast.

Handel: Israel in Egypt HMV 54

18 March 2024, Palau de la Musica, Barcelona, Spain
20 March 2024, Philharmonie, Luxembourg
22 March 2024, St Martin-in-the-Fields, London, UK
24 March 2024, Chapelle Royale, Château de Versailles, France
26 March 2024, Elbphilharmonie, Hamburg, Germany

Palau de la Music, Barcelona, 18 March 2024 (Photograph: Toni Bofill) Philharmonie, Luxembourg, 20 March 2024 (Photograph: Philharmonie Luxembourg/Eric Devilled) St Martin-in-the-Fields, 22 March 2024 (Photograph: Paul Marc Mitchell)