Tomás Luis de Victoria (1548-1611): Ascendens Christus in altum – Gradualia

This impressive live performance of Victoria’s five-part (SSATB) Ascension motet Ascendens Christus in altum (Christ ascending on high) shows what a small talented choir can do with Victoria’s wonderfully sunny and happy music. Modern performances of Victoria’s music tend to involve large forces but as Gradualia’s excellent performance which you can hear below clearly demonstrates…

Giaches de Wert (1535-96): Jerusalem, Jerusalem

De Wert was a Flemish composer who worked in Northern Italy for aristocratic patrons for most of his life. He was brought to Na­ples as a boy where his manifest talent was such that aged six­te­en he took up a post at the court of Novel­lara. While there he published several books of madrigals all…

Jacquet de Mantua (1483 -1559): Aspice Domine

I wrote about this five-part (SATTB) motet by Jacquet de Mantua featuring the performance by Delititiæ Musicæ under Marco Longhini back  in May. 1  I recently stumbled across this performance by the Choir of Magdalen College, Oxford under Bill Ives, really it’s superb, don’t miss it. mfi

Peter Philips (1560-1628): Ave Regina cælorum

Peter Philips’ setting of the Marian antiphon Ave Regina cælorum (Hail, Queen of heaven) was published in his Cantiones Sacræ of 1612. It’s a five-part (SSATB) setting very much in the new Roman style. The five-voice structure meant that he could vary the texture at will to reflect words or phrases in his text coupled…