Hana Blazikova, Cordarte - German Baroque Cantatas

Published Thursday 9th January 2014
Hana Blazikova, Cordarte - German Baroque Cantatas
Hana Blazikova, Cordarte - German Baroque Cantatas

STYLE: Classical
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
LABEL: Pan Classics PC10293

Reviewed by Steven Whitehead

The Czech soprano Hana Blazíkóva is one of the most exciting voices in the Baroque scene today. After receiving her final diploma at the Conservatory of her native city Prague in 2002, the singer rapidly gained a reputation as a Baroque interpreter both in the concert hall and on record where she has featured in several prestigious series, including Suzuki's complete Bach Cantatas with his Bach Collegium Japan. This latest recording introduces Hana Blazíkóva as a solo artist for the first time. She has selected cantatas and sacred concertos from the second half of the 17th century, during the period when the so-called "stylus phantasticus" was crystallising in the German-speaking world. This is characterised by the alternation between freely rhapsodic monodies creating the effect of improvisations with sections of great contrapuntal, polyphonic density. Ranging from virtuoso coloraturas, declamatory calls to prayer and intimate, heartfelt courtly love for Jesus, the works of Johann Schop (c. 1590-1667), Johann Philipp Förtsch (1652-1732), Heinrich Ignaz Franz Biber (1644-1704), Johann Pachelbel (c. 1653-1706), Dieterich Buxtehude (1637-1707), Samuel Capricornus (1628-1685) and Samuel Ebart (1655-1684) are typical for their time. No doubt readers who recognise all these names will be ordering this CD straight away but for those of us who are less familiar with German Baroque this may be too specialised. However Miss Blazikova has a pleasant voice and the Early Music trio CordArte play very well indeed so those who want to widen their musical horizons may enjoy this.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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