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Pepusch: Chandos Anthems The Harmonious Society Of Tickle-Fiddle Gentlemen, Robert Rawson

Pepusch: Chandos Anthems The Harmonious Society Of Tickle-Fiddle Gentlemen, Robert Rawson

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Chandos Anthems is usually associated with Handel's name – a collection of cantatas that Handel wrote as "house composer" for James Brydges, later Duke of Chandos and the richest man in England. From 1719 - Handel was concentrating on opera again - Johann Christoph Pepusch took over this task. The Duke was a great lover of the baroque riches of Italy and was able at his private chapel to circumvent the strict purist guidelines of the Anglican Church for church music, where no instruments were allowed in church music apart from the organ, and certainly no women. Pepusch, too, was a great friend of Venetian splendour; he came from Berlin and quickly made a career for himself in London from 1704 onwards; his "Beggar's Opera" achieved great fame. While the possibilities Handel had with the Duke of Chandos were still limited, Pepusch was able to draw from the full range: the ensemble grew beyond the chamber music group and a handful of singers to a small orchestra with multiple strings, organ/harpsichord, trumpet, bassoon, oboe and recorders. In addition, there was a choir of at least seven adult singers plus a number of trebles, which Pepusch knew how to use to good effect. Robert Rawson, a pronounced specialist in Pepusch's music, presents three large and colourful Pepusch anthems in a first recording with his Harmonious Society of Tickle-Fiddle Gentlemen. The seven solo singers are beautifully supported by the Girl Choristers of Canterbury Cathedral.

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