Annelie Sophie Müller

Image by Josef-Stefan Kindler, All rights reserved.
Annelie Sophie Müller

Image by Josef-Stefan Kindler, All rights reserved.Annelie Sophie Müller was born in Freiburg i. Brsg., Germany. At very young age she had already learned to play the violin, the piano, percussion and to dance ballet. She started to take her first singing lessons when she was 19. She studied Vocal, Interpretation of Songs, and Pedagogical Music (main instrument piano) in Stuttgart, Germany. Annelie Sophie Müller got an invitation in 2010 from the Komische Oper Berlin to join the Opera Studio, therefore she finished her studies in this year. She received further musical education through masterclasses with Ks. Brigitte Fassbaender, Ks. Christa Ludwig, Thomas Hampson and Ingeborg Danz, which had influenced her intensely. Now her current teacher is Danish Professor Susanna Eken. Annelie Sophie Müller has performed with conductors such as Maurizio Barbacini, Alexander Vedernikov, Henrik Nánási, Konrad Junghänel, Axel Kober and Patrick Lange. She has also worked with stage directors such as Barrie Kosky, Calixto Bieito and Andreas Homoki. For the part of Pe- Ki, her first big part on stage, Annelie Sophie Müller received a nomination for "best upcoming singer 2012" in the journal "Opernwelt". In 2010 at the International Song Competition of the International Hugo- Wolf- Academie in Stuttgart, Germany, she was given first prize. Annelie Sophie Müller received a scholarship from the Baden- Württemberg- Stipendium and a scholarship from the Richard-Wagner-Organisation Germany. She also took part at the Academie Festival d'Aix-en-Provence in 2011 and she was in the Academy of Heidelberger Frühling in 2012. As an interpret of art songs Annelie Sophie Müller gave several concerts at famous festivals.
George Fr. Handel · JephthaGeorge Fr. Handel · Jephtha
George Frideric Handel:
Complete recording of the English Oratorio HWV 70,
performed according to the traditions of the time
by Kirsten Blaise (Soprano), Annelie Sophie Müller (Mezzo-Soprano),
David Allsopp (Altus, Countertenor), Benjamin Hulett (Tenor),
Simon Bailey (Bass), Ensemble il capriccio (Baroque Orchestra),
Maulbronn Chamber Choir.
Conductor: Jürgen Budday.
A concert recording from the church of the German
UNESCO World Heritage Site Maulbronn Monastery
HD Recording · DDD · Double Album · c. 163 Minutes (2h:43m)
2 CD
EUR 33,00SpotifyDeezerNapsterYouTube MusicApple MusicNaxos Music LibraryIdagioTidalAmazon.comiTunesQobuz HDPresto Music HDReview

Almost three hours of superb-sounding music...

This recording is in many ways a real treasure. Its chief value is that it vividly captures a wonderful performance of Handel’s final oratorio, giving the listener a fine impression of the venue, the medieval Maulbronn monastery in southern Germany. The opening notes of the thrillingly dramatic overture grab the listener’s interest and the well-chosen soloists make a vivid impression.
The story involves the military leader, Jephtha (tenor), who is asked by his brother, Zebul (baritone) to lead the Israelites against their oppressors, the Ammonites. Jephtha vows that, if successful, he will sacrifice the first person he sees after the battle. This turns out to be his daughter, Iphis (soprano). His wife, Storgè (mezzo-soprano) and Iphis’s fiancé Hamor (counter-tenor), are suitably horrified, as are the onlooking Israelites. An angel (soprano) transmutes Iphis's sentence to life as a virgin; hallelujahs are sung.
Benjamin Hulett is outstanding as Jephtha who at first is exuberant when facing his military task, then anguished and horrified at the results of his vow. His accompagnato “Deeper, and deeper still” would be worthy of a musical dramatization of King Lear. The other main role is that of Iphis, sung by American soprano Kirsten Blaise; she also must express a wide range of emotions and carries it off extremely well. Simon Bailey is rich-voiced and stalwart as Zebul, and Annelie Sophie Müller as Storgè is blessed with a voice that has a rosy bloom about it. David Allsopp gets off to an uncertain start as Hamor but in the end rises to full worthy participation in his duet with Iphis, plus a quartet and quintet with the other principals.
The 39-member choir and 26-member orchestra provide exactly the right sound for this great work. The orchestra use specially reconstructed period instruments tuned to the historically accurate a=415 Hz. Jürgen Budday’s tempi are well-judged throughout. Some might find the acoustic to be overly resonant, but I find it helps bring to life a performance I wish I had been able to attend. But there are almost three hours of superb-sounding music on just two CDs.
Still the stated aim of K&K is to capture an outstanding performance in which “the performers, audience, opus and room enter into an intimate dialogue that is...unique and unrepeatable”. This they have accomplished.

© 2014, Michael Johnson

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