Poulenc: Gloria; Stabat Mater
Boston Pops Orchestra, Kathleen Battle, Seiji Ozawa & Tanglewood Festival Chorus
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Many Strengths -- A Few Weaknesses
Ozawa is a great interpreter, and Kathleen Battle is a fine soprano. The orchestra understands the brightness of Poulenc's orchestrations. However, there is still a bit of a lacking, especially in the choir, which is placed further away from the microphones than they should be. Consequently, they are continually overshadowed by the orchestra. It's hard to argue, however, with the right tempos, the excellent playing, and the wonderful soloist.
Again, does not iTune know the difference between the Boston Pops and Boston Symphony.
brmerrick: Could not Agree More!
Kathleen Battle is absolute perfection and orchestra, tempos are all fantastic. Not sure why the choir got the short end of the stick. There are times when the choir is so overpowered it made me look at the jacket to see who were the sound engineers. Almost sounds like a live recording rather than a session recording. But we've come a long way since 1989 in sound technology, condenser microphones and in learning how to best mic and record a choir. Not an easy task even today. Still, you won't find a better recording of Poulenc's Gloria. Treat yourself!
Formed: July 11, 1885 in Boston, MA
Years Active: '20s, '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s