Posts Tagged ‘ Polyphony ’

Juan Gutiérrez de Padilla (±1590 – 1664): Deus in adiutorium

0
April 2, 2014

Deus in adiutorium is an introductory versicles intended to be sung during various Offices. It's a cry to God for help from the faithful and De Padilla's setting, a simple plainsong intonation, is very typical of the use to which plainsong was put in Spain and its colonies at the time.

markfromireland

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

John Sheppard (c1515–December 1558): Media Vita

0
March 25, 2014

Sheppard's music is not as popular as that of his contemporaries – I think this is a shame as he's right up there alongside his better-known contemporaries Taverner, Tye, White, and even Tallis. If you want to hear Tudor era music of breathtaking beauty and originality then Sheppard's compositions surely fit the bill. Media Vita is his undoubted masterpiece its sheer breadth of phrasing and expressiveness coupled with stunning sonorities and a remarkably deft hand with dissonance always stops me in my tracks. It's been recorded a few times – I think the most recent recording is by Stile Antico, but the recording below was the first and the one I find that I come back to time and time again.

markfromireland

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

3rd Sunday of Lent 2014: Eriks Ešenvalds (b1977) – Passion and Resurrection

0
March 23, 2014

Eriks EšenvaldsEriks Ešenvalds' Passion and Resurrection was written in 2005 and premiered by Maris Sirmais and the State Choir Latvija. It recounts the Passion using a series of viewpoints that Ešenvalds connects musically to create an integrated whole. Even if you feel that modern choral music isn't for you I'd encourage you to give this piece a try you may be very pleasantly surprised.   It's written in four parts that succeed each other without interruption and each of which is prefaced by lines from scripture and interwoven with quotations from by the sixteenth-century Spanish composer Cristóbal de Morales' setting of Parce Mihi. The piece requires an expert choir and makes heavy demands on the soprano soloist but when the choir is the English choir 'Polyphony' under their conductor Stephen Layton and the soprano soloist is Carolyn Sampson the demands of the piece are handled masterfully and convincingly. I wonder why it is that so many singers who specialise in Medieval, Renaissance, or Baroque music have such an affinity for modern music. Whatever the reason we benefit from Carolyn Sampson's sympathetic and supremely confident singing here. Passion and Resurrection made a strong impression on me when I first heard it and I enjoy it more and more with each listening, I hope you will too.

markfromireland

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

Francisco Guerrero (1528-1599): O lux beata Trinitas

February 17, 2014

Francisco Guerrero became the most influential and respected composer in Spain in the time of Philip II. Trained first by his brother and then tutored by Cristóbal de Morales he was a versatile and gifted musician who not only sang and composed but was an excellent player of the organ, vihuela, harp and cornett. Stylistically he's somewhere between de Morales and de Victoria not as dour as Morales and not as concise (or cheerful) as de Victoria. His setting of the Vespers hymn O lux beata Trinitas (O light, O blessed Trinity) is written in the 'more hispano' —'in the Spanish manner' and so it's not plainchant as such because it was notated mensurally, in other words it was meant to be performed using various note values or even even in strict metrical rhythms. It's in duple time and if you listen carefully you can hear the top voice paraphrasing the chant. Enjoy :-).

markfromireland

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

Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina (±1525-1594): Stabat Mater

0
January 24, 2014

Palestrina's 'Stabat Mater' was written around 1589 and is that musical paradox a miniature on a grand scale written in the Venetian polychoral style. It's harmonies are modal which gives an atmosphere of nostalgia and regret to Palestrina's word painting. It's the musical equivalent of the paintings of the grieving mother at the foot of the cross so beloved of Italian Renaissance sensibility and was an immediate hit with the Papal authorities who recognising it as a masterpiece on a par with Allegri's Miserere decreed that it was only permitted to be performed by the Papal Choir on Palm Sunday. Enjoy :-).

markfromireland

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

Archives

Special Pages