Arvo Pärt – Most Holy Mother of God – The Hilliard Ensemble – YouTube

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July 4, 2015

Arvo Pärt composed this in 2003 for The Hilliard Ensemble. Enjoy :-).
mfi Click here to listen to the music and read the rest of the posting ...

Kyrie, W. Byrd, Wiltener Sängerknaben, Wilten Boys´ Choir, Johannes Stecher – YouTube

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July 3, 2015

The Kyrie from Byrd Mass for five voices sung by the Wilten Boys´ Choir, under Johannes Stecher in June 2015. Enjoy :-).
mfi Click here to listen to the music and read the rest of the posting ...

Francisco de Peñalosa (±1470-1528): Sacris Solemnis

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July 2, 2015

This setting of Sacris solemnis is largely a reconstruction by Bruno Turner as only one verse of Peñalosa's setting of  the Corpus Christi hymn is known to have survived. It's an alternatim setting in which Peñalosa’s polyphony alternates with the catchy and popular Spanish melody for the hymn. Enjoy :-)

mfi

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Orlande de Lassus (±1530-1594): Osculetur me

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July 1, 2015

De Lassus used this motet which takes its text from the Song of Songs as the basis for his Mass of the same name. It's an eight-part setting for double choir (SATB SATB) first published in 1582 in Fasciculi aliquot sacrarum it's characterise by long phrasing offset by contrapuntal writing and contrasting sonority between the passages for the individual choirs and the passages for the combined choirs. Enjoy :-).

mfi

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Cristóbal de Morales (±1500 –1553): Clamabat autem mulier Chananea

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June 30, 2015

This Lenten motet which tells the story of the encounter between Jesus and the Canaanite woman whose daughter was possessed is unusual amongst de Morales' motets in that it's a narrative. It's a five-part (SSATB) setting that pays close attention to the dialogue and action of the text. Enjoy :-).

mfi

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Orlande de Lassus (±1530-1594): Qui sequitur me

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June 29, 2015

De Lassus' motet Qui sequitur me (He that followeth me) sets the text of John 8:12 for two voices. He reflects the text by using close imitation between the two voices at varying intervals to provide a tightly woven polyphonic structure. Enjoy :-)

mfi

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Antonín Dvořák (1841-1904): Piano Quartet No. 2 in E flat, Op. 87- Janine Jansen & Friends – IKFU 2015 – Live Concert HD

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June 28, 2015

Sometimes there's a happy synchronicity and this weekend is one such there's an excellent exposition of this piece by Stephen Johnson as part of  BBC Radio 3's 'Discovering Music' series. It' still available for on-line listening and well worth your while. You can hear it here: ▶ BBC Radio 3 - Discovering Music, Dvorak: Piano Quartet No. 2 and I urge you to do so while it's still available before proceeding to the quartet itself. I love this quartet from it's brisk – almost brusque, statement of the opening theme to the way in which Dvořák progresses to rapidly combining and interweaving themes into different but always congruent textures. There's a wonderful balance throughout between Dvořák's lyricism, brisk forward movement, and passion all combined with an intriguing exploration of folk elements.  Enjoy :-).

mfi

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Libera in America: Sanctus – YouTube

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June 27, 2015

Another video from Libera's American tour this one published on 24 Jun 2015 is of their classic "Sanctus". Enjoy :-).
mfi Click here to listen to the music and read the rest of the posting ...

Psalms 126 & 127 (Westminster Cathedral Choir, 2014) – YouTube

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June 26, 2015

Choral Vespers from Westminster Cathedral, 8th October 2014 Psalms 126 & 127 (Plainsong)

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Francisco de Peñalosa (±1470-1528): Sancta Maria

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June 25, 2015

Francisco de Peñalosa's setting of the Magnificat Antiphon for First Vespers on Feasts of the Blessed Virgin Mary is quite typical of his motets in that it's entirely free of borrowed material and is very concerned  expressing the text this very humanist approach represented a decisive break with the past and Peñalosa exploited the compositional freedom to the full. Enjoy :-).

mfi

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John Mason (±1480 – 1548): Vae nobis miseris

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June 24, 2015

Mason was was awarded the BMus at Oxford in February 1509 and was ordained as a priest at around that time. He held the post of informator choristarum (Instructor of the Choristers of the chapel) at Magdalen College, for a fifteen month period from March 1509 until June 1510 but left to take up other posts awarded to him by influential patrons amongst them Cardinal Thomas Wolsey whom he served for a time as chaplain. He acquired various livings but in 1523 he took up one of the two Mortimer chantries in Chichester Cathedral. This was a lucrative posting in the gift of the King and it seems likely that he was given the appointment to aid the then Bishop of Chichester's efforts to enlarge and improve the cathedral choir. After a spell at Chichester he took up a post in Hereford Cathedral in 1525 where he seems to have remained for the rest of his life being appointed the cathedral's treasurer in 1545.

His antiphon Vae nobis miseris (Woe to us wretches) is a Jesus antiphon in other words it's an antiphon meant to be sung after compline in order to foster devotion amongst the laity to Jesus and his passion. These Jesus antiphons became more and more popular in England during the reign of Henry VIII as the cult of the Virgin declined. It's quite a large scale work and surprisingly modern in many respects somewhere between Fayrfax and Taverner. Enjoy :-)

mfi

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Matthaeus Pipelare ( ±1450 — ±1515): Salve Regina

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June 23, 2015

Pipelare's setting of the Salve is an alternatim setting in which only the even-numbered verses are set. I think it must be a relatively early work because of its rhythmic use of syncopated short notes it's a surprisingly varied setting that makes use of the old-fashioned technique of varying dense imitative writing with multipart passages. Enjoy :-).

mfi

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