Orlande de Lassus (±1530-1594): Sepul­to Domino Teneb­rae Re­spon­so­ry For Holy Satur­day

The text of Sepul­to Domino the ninth Teneb­rae Re­spon­so­ry For Holy Satur­day comes from the Gospel According to St. Matthew which recounts how following Jesus’ death and burial the chief priests went to Pilate to demand that the tomb be sealed and guarded. Lassus’ setting contrasts homophony with two-part contrapuntalism to provide musical interest and…

William Byrd (±1539-1623): Tribulatio proxima est

Byrd’s penitential motet Tribulatio proxima est (Tribulation is near ) was published in the Cantiones Sacrae of 1591 and takes its text from Psalms 21 and 69 respectively. As you might expect of Byrd the music serves to portray the text so we have a strong outcry at the plea for justice (vindica me), twisted…

Thomas Tallis (±1505-1585): Miserere nostri

Miserere nostri is unusual amongst Tallis’ motets in being set for more than five parts and in following a continental double canon model rather than an English model. It’s for six voices with a seventh (tenor) voice making an appearance once for harmonic reasons. mfi

Hans Leo Hassler (1562-1612): Ad Dominum

Hassler was very influential in his day both Bach (O Haput voll Blut und Wunde) and Schütz (Psalmen Davids) quoted his music. The son of a stonecutter and part time musician in Nuremburg he was sent to Venice to study music and composition. In Venice he came under the influence of the Gabrieli’s  studying under…