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markfromireland

Francisco Guerrero (1528-1599): Hei mihi, Domine

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March 7, 2014

Guerrero's setting of the responsory from Matins for the Dead, Hei mihi, Domine  was inserted into a setting of the Mass for the Dead, published in 1582. Unlike the Mass itself which as you might expect relies heavily on the plainchant the motet is much more freely composed with very rich and full textures that contrasts to great effect with the austerity of the Mass' four-part setting. It's a very skilfully composed piece of and Guerrero seems to have been proud of it as he published it twice more in collections of his motets.  Enjoy :-).

markfromireland

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Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741): Filiae maestae Jerusalem, RV638

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March 6, 2014

This very affecting motet is one of two introductory motets for the 'Miserere' that Vivaldi composed for the Pietà to be sung during Holy Week. It dates from sometime around 1715.  The 'Daughters of Jerusalem' who are upon to witness the Crucifixion are a metaphor for the figlie di coro of the Pietà.  The singer bewails the crucified Christ in the first aria. The second aria with its word-painting lists the Arcadian delights to be forgone, while the third movement is a recitative whose penultimate word – 'miserere' cued the following psalm. It's sung below in a live performance given by Andreas Scholl at a concert given on July 6th 2013 at Basilique Notre-Dame, Beaune. Enjoy :-).

markfromireland

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Josquin Des Prez (±1450-1521): Miserere mei

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March 5, 2014

Josquin Signature 180x143Josquin's setting of the Psalm Miserere mei, Deus, (Psalm 50, Psalm 51 in the vulgate)is associated with Ash Wednesday, Holy Week, and other penitential occasions.  It's a lenghty piece that's one of his most impressive pieces of music and probably was first performed in 1504 during Josquin's stay at the court of Ferrara.

Josquin's settings tend to the spare and economical and his Miserere is no exception – it's downright austere relying as it does on bare perfect intervals and sparing use of homophony. The effect of this ís to put the music strictly at the service of the text. The motet is plain, unadorned, 'musically naked' as Fuhrman 1 puts it and oh so very very beautiful.

markfromireland.

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Knabenchor der Chorakademie singt Abendlied von Rheinberger – YouTube

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March 4, 2014

Knabenchor der Chorakademie Dortmund sing Rheinberger's Abendlied

"Bleib bei uns, denn es will Abend werden, und der Tag hat sich geneiget, o bleib bei uns, denn es will Abend werden." Lukas 24:29

( 29 But they constrained him, saying: Stay with us, because it is towards evening and the day is now far spent. And he went in with them.
Source: NEW ADVENT BIBLE: Luke 24)

I've written about this Rheinberger's most well known piece before (see: J.G. Rheinberger: Abendlied — Dresdner Kreuzchor | Saturday Chorale), it's sung below by the choir of the Dortmund Choral Academy under their director Jost Salm. Enjoy :-).

markfromireland

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Orlando Gibbons (1583-1625): Behold, thou hast made my days

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March 3, 2014

Orlando Gibbons' setting of verses 5-7 and 12-13 from Psalm 39. Enjoy :-).

markfromireland

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