Blog Archives

markfromireland

Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741): Laudate pueri RV600

0
September 11, 2014

Vespers was a very important service which accounts for the many settings of the Psalms which were such an important component in its structure.  This particular setting by Vivaldi of Psalm 112  Laudate Pueri is a fairly early work. it's in C minor and is a surprisingly dark-toned piece. It's a lovely multi-movement work for soloist – who would originally have been one of the Pietà's famous orphan musicians. It's not my favourite amongst Vivaldi's religious pieces or even of his settings of this Psalm. I'm not quite sure why, it's not that his highly elaborated setting doesn't work because it does. But somehow it feels quite untidy almost as though Vivaldi was still experimenting to find what worked and what didn't don't let that put you off it is as I say a lovely piece. Enjoy :-)

mfi

Click here to listen to the music and read the rest of the posting ...

Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina (±1525-1594): Adiuro vos, filiae Hierusalem

0
September 10, 2014

This is the nineteenth in the series of twenty-nine motets based upon The Song of Songs intended to be sung on non-liturgical devotional occasions. Enjoy :-)

mfi

Click here to listen to the music and read the rest of the posting ...

Dieterich Buxtehude (±1637-1707): Cantate Domino

0
September 9, 2014

Buxtehude Captioned 150x150 Dieterich Buxtehude's setting of the first four verses from Psalm 95 in the Vulgate (Psalm 96 in protestant bilbles) is a motet scored for SSB or SAB with accompaniment – Viola Da Gamba and organ. It's a lovely piece that has strong Italianate influences. Close your eyes and you could easily imagine it to be from Monteverdi's pen. Enjoy :-).

mfi

Click here to listen to the music and read the rest of the posting ...

Sebastián de Vivanco (±1550-1622): Versa est in luctum

0
September 8, 2014

Sebastián de Vivanco was one of the leading Spanish composers of his time. He was born in Avila –  the same town as de Victoria, and as you can see from his birth and death dates was de Victoria's contemporary. Stevenson speculates that he studied under the same masters as de Victoria which seems to me to be entirely probable. His career was that of a musical star maestro de capilla at Lérida Cathedral,  maestro de capilla at Segovia Cathedral, maestro de capilla at Avila Cathedral, maestro de capilla at Salamanca Cathedral, Professor of Music at Salamanca University. Nor did his fame die with him his music – including this setting of Versa est in luctum, was still a part of the repertoire more than a century after his death.

Versa est in luctum the text of which is taken from the Book of Job Chapter 30 Verse 31 is a motet intended to be sung at the end of a Missa pro Defunctis, a Requiem mass. Why was such a motet necessary particularly as the text of Versa est in luctum was not part of the traditional Spanish liturgy?

The answer lies in Spanish liturgical practices.  In de Vivanco's time Spanish usage was that a sermon was normally preached before the last rites were administered to the deceased and that in between these two events which were called 'The Oration' and 'The Absolution' a motet was sung. The purpose of such music, of all religious music, was not only Ad Majoram Dei Gloriam but also to heighten and intensify the emotions being felt by the congregation. The text of Versa est in luctum is certainly entirely suited to this purpose and even a moderately well educated Spaniard of the time would have found its references to musical mourning and weeping together with its pleas to God for mercy not only appropriate but a stimulus to reflection. Vivanco's meditative and plangent setting matches the text and its purpose perfectly  it's also somewhat unusual from a composer more often thought of in connection with his villancicos.

mfi

Click here to listen to the music and read the rest of the posting ...

Sunday Concert: American Boychoir Experience concert at Princeton Center for Arts & Education 2012 – YouTube

0
September 7, 2014

The American Boychoir Experience is a programme in which boys from eight to twelve years old who might be interested in singing choral music with the choir get to experience one week in the life of an American Boychoir student without the academic classes. The week is a fully professional experience in choral training that includes music theory classes and a public performance as well as a Tour Bus event and some fun and games. The video is a little bit jerky but the singing definitely isn't. The American Boychoir are a stunningly good choir. Enjoy :-).

mfi

Click here to listen to the music and read the rest of the posting ...

Archives

Special Pages