BMC 20
GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL (1685-1759)
WATER MUSIC
BATH FESTIVAL ORCHESTRA
Yehudi Menuhin

MUSIC for the ROYAL FIREWORKS
The LEEDS CHAMBER ORCHESTRA
Martin Stevens

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THE WATER MUSIC - 1717 (complete)
1. Suite #1 in F Major
Part 1: Overture / Allegro / Moderato - trio / Air
Part 2: Menuet - trio / Bourrée / Hornpipe / Dialog

2. Suite #2 in D Major
Allegro - gigue / Hornpipe / Menuet / Lentement / Presto
3. Suite #3 in G Major
Lento / Aria - minore / Menuet / Andante / Country dance

MUSIC FOR THE ROYAL FIREWORKS - 1749
Part 1: Overture (Adagio/Allegro-Lentement-Adagio/Allegro) – Bourrée
Part 2: La Paix (Largo alla Siziliana) – La Réjouissance – Minuet I – Minuet II

Total Time: 70:02

In the summer of 1717 the King George requested a concert on the River Thames, and Handel was commissioned to write 'Water Music', for wind and strings. With members of the court and musicians accommodated in barges, the evening's entertainment went on until the early hours of the morning, and was, according to several contemporary reports, a great success.

The Music for the Royal Fireworks was composed some 30 years later, in 1749, to accompany the festivities at Green Park in celebration of the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle. The public rehearsal in Vauxhall Gardens drew an audience of some 12,000 people and created a 3-hour traffic jam on London Bridge! Handel as usual is in top musical form: there was no state or royal occasion to which Handel could not rise with appropriate musical pomp and splendor!

The Water Music is complete, and is here performed by the Bath Festival Orchestra under Yehudi Menuhin. Orchestra, conductor and featured players (oboe, horns, trumpets) are on top form; the music is lively or dramatic as called for, the phrasing and detailing have been well considered and prepared. A most fortunate combination indeed.

Our Music for the Royal Fireworks is performed by the Leeds Chamber Orchestra under Martin Stevens. The north of England has a long tradition of fine Handel performances and this is no exception.

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