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Gesualdo: Madrigals, Book 1 / Longhini, Delitiae Musicare

Gesualdo / Delitiae Musicare / Longhini
Release Date: 04/27/2010 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8570548   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Carlo Gesualdo
Performer:  Carmen Leoni
Conductor:  Marco Longhini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Delitiae Musicae
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 56 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

We last encountered the 6-voice Italian male ensemble Delitiae Musicae in its series of Monteverdi madrigals for Naxos. And it's clear after spending a few minutes with this first volume of the group's planned 6-disc traversal of Carlo Gesualdo's works in the same genre that Delitiae Musicae truly owns this repertoire.

Although certainly not devoid of chromaticism and hints of Gesualdo's later ventures into sometimes bizarre harmonic territory, these works are overall more conventional in their expressive techniques--but what expression and what techniques! You won't hear more effectively written musical representations of the passion, pain, longing, or other of love's emotions portrayed in the poetic texts (primarily by
Read more Torquato Tasso) from any composer of the period, and these native singers understand the language--both written and musical--better than any other ensemble on disc. (Highlights begin at the opening two tracks--"Baci soavi e cari" Parts One and Two--and continue through another two-part madrigal near the program's end--"Felice primavera!")

The nuances of dynamics and phrasing--not to mention the exceptional breath control and intonation--show an ensemble, like the music's composer, working at the highest artistic level. You may not want to listen to all 20 of these pieces at one sitting, and the sound brings the voices just a bit too close in some places--a particular voice suddenly jumps out from the ensemble--but there's no doubt as to the pleasure you'll experience in hearing this music sung as it should be sung.

--David Vernier, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

Madrigals, Book 1 by Carlo Gesualdo
Performer:  Carmen Leoni (Harpsichord)
Conductor:  Marco Longhini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Delitiae Musicae
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1594; Italy 
Venue:  Chiesa di San Pietro in Vincoli, Azzago, 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Beautiful Voices - Excellent Performances August 25, 2012 By Clifford H C. (Thompson, MB) See All My Reviews "Gesualdo: Madrigals Book 1, 2 & 3

Delitiae Musicare

I purchased all three volumes when these were on sale and they are well worth the price. Delitiae Musicare have an excellent blend of voices that make this music just POP. The early madrigals by Gesualdo show a remarkable flair for harmony and drama. It is always interesting when you can hear compositions that were not written for economic gain. Gesualdo was well off and did not require patrons or employers telling him what to write. During the course of the three books of Madrigals you can see the progression of harmonies that set Gesualdo apart from other composers. He truly liked to experiment with the sound landscapes he creates. Delitiae Musicare does a remarkable job of bringing this music to life.

Naxos does an excellent job of making the libretto and other materials available on their internet site. I really wish more recording companies would get this! Just because it is a budget recording does not mean that the consumer doesn’t deserve the word-books (libretto). Putting them on the web costs almost nothing, but makes consumers very HAPPY! Bravo Naxos!
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