Haydn The Creation, Freiburg Baroque Orchestra/ RIAS Chamber Choir/ Jacobs, Barbican Hall

And Haydn said – let there be enlightenment.

Monteverdi Choir/ English Baroque Soloists/ Gardiner, Christ Church Spitalfields

Over at Christ Church Spitalfields, as part of the annual Winter Festival, John Eliot Gardiner has been serialising Bach's Christmas Oratorio.

View of Delft (1660) By Johannes Vermeer

There are works in which a single detail steals the show. Leonardo's Mona Lisa is famous for that smile. Michelangelo's The Creation of Adam is famous for those hands. And Vermeer's View of Delft – well, not quite so famous. But among readers of Proust, at least, the painting can't be recalled without a mention of one particular bit.

The art of love: Johannes Vermeer

A smile full of possibilities

Album: The Move, Looking On (Salvo)

Looking On was a transitional album in The Move’s career, with Jeff Lynne drafted in to replace the cabaret-bound Carl Wayne and share some of Roy Wood’s songwriting burden, en route to ELO.

Lost Highway, English National Opera, Young Vic, London<br/>Freiburg Baroque/Bernarda Fink, Barbican Hall, London

It's soulless va va voom, this sex on a motorbike: A David Lynch film turned opera &ndash; heaven for fans, but what about everyone else?

Album: Franz Schmidt, The Book with Seven Seals &ndash; Kristjan Jarv (Chandos)

Franz Schmidt's oratorio had its first performance in Vienna two months after the Anschluss, which is about as bad a launch as you can get.

Album: Bach, Motets &ndash; Trinity Baroque/Podger (Raum Klang)

Philippe Herreweghe's 1986 recording of the Bach Motets has long been in the small pile of discs to be grabbed in case of a fire. Thanks to Trinity Baroque, that pile is now a little bigger. Prepared by tenor Julian Podger and performed conductorless by single voices and an expressive continuo team of violone and organ, this disc has unparalleled immediacy and drama. With interpolated chant and chorales to compensate for the omission of "Lobert den Herrn", and stunning performances of two chorale preludes on the organ of St Wenzel Church, Naumburg, by James Johnstone, the quality is simply extraordinary.

James Bowman, St Martin-in-the-Fields, London

Where would "early music" have been without James Bowman? Probably not in the flourishing state it is now. And would the counter-tenor voice be the fashionable thing it is today, if he hadn't kick-started its emergence from the shadowy, over-refined realms inhabited by Alfred Deller? When Bowman breathed life into Britten's Oberon, and went on to incarnate Handel's heroes with burnished authority, the voice that had been banished to the liturgy was brought back centre-stage. The mountain of Baroque recordings he's created over the past 40 years all bear witness to his uniquely powerful and expressive sound.

Shaping up in Prague

How can you get children interested in architecture? Take them to the Czech capital and play 'Spot The Sad Lady', says Adrian Mourby

News: Rembrandt remembered

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