Thursday, June 25, 2009

Die Wiltener Sangerknaben, Innsbruck, Tyrol

The Wilten Boys Choir is among the oldest and most traditional boys’ choirs. They’ve been around at the Wilten monastery since the mid-thirteenth century. The concert choir and junior choirs have more than 150 boys.
Their foundation is in liturgical choral singing but they also do sacred vocal music from motets to oratorios and secular choral music like Tyrolean folk music and operas.

The CD that I have is the Joseph Haydn oratorio Die Schopfung (the creation) and like so many CD’s from that area the liner notes are all in German so I have to try and decode a few things here and there.
From what I can tell, there are two boy soloists, Thomas Reitner and Philippe Spiegel. The music is provided by the Timisoara Philharmonic and it’s great.
This is a two disc CD, recorded live in 2003, and is divided into three parts. The first and second parts are conversations between the angels Raphael, Uriel and Gabriel. Raphael and Gabriel are sung by men but Uriel is a boy’s voice. The third act is conversation between Adam and Eve. I have no idea what anyone is saying but I suspect it has something to do with an apple.

The great thing about classical music is that, like opera, you don’t have to know what the words mean. They just sound great and maybe not knowing the meaning of the words makes it easier to hear each voice as another musical instrument.

The choir comes in several times in this oratorio but I wish they had a bigger part because they are really excellent and so are the two young soloists. These are some very accomplished boys.
I’m getting more and more into classical, as long as it’s sung by boys, anyway. This is one of Haydn’s great compositions and act two has that famous trio of Gabriel, Uriel and Raphael, In Holder Anmut Stehn, Mit Jungem Grun.
At least I think that’s the title. It’s probably like opera arias where the song is known by its first words, but I could be wrong.

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