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Cantigas De Amigo / Ensemble Alcatraz, Kitka


Release Date: 08/15/2000 
Label:  Sono Luminus   Catalog #: 90285   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  TraditionalShira KammenKit HigginsonAlfons X (El Sabio),   ... 
Performer:  Shira KammenPeter MaundSusan Rode MorrisLeslie Bonnett,   ... 
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz EnsembleKITKAAngelorum
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 5 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews


The disc's subtitle is "13th-century Galician-Portuguese Songs & Dances of Love, Longing, & Devotion". My subtitle is, "this is one of the finest discs of its kind." It fully, often arrestingly captures the essential spirit of these lovely poetic texts and ancient melodies and virtually jumps and dances and vibrantly rings with the kind of life these songs' creators must have felt 800 years ago. If you're new to secular music of this period and place, you will be surprised at its incredible rhythmic energy, catchiness, and complexity. You'll also be captivated by the originality and variety of the melodies--sensuous, infectious, irresistible. Of course, we will never know
Read more for sure how those singers and instrumentalists of ancient times performed these songs, but that's not really the point, any more than we worry about only performing a Bob Dylan song the way Bob Dylan does it.


In fact, several of these songs aren't all that ancient: Because many of the original melodies have been lost or weren't attached to the original texts, other melodies--some taken from other contemporary sources and others written or arranged according to period custom by members of Ensemble Alcatraz--had to be supplied. Veteran early music listeners will hear a little Baltimore Consort, a little Anonymous 4, an occasional hint of Gothic Voices style--but ultimately these first class performers, melodists, and arrangers do their own thing with as much sincerity and care for period style--with an ear to modern acoustical esthetics--as the best of their colleagues.


These "songs of love and longing for the absent beloved" are women's songs, and here they're sung either by a solo voice or female ensemble. Accompaniment varies from harp and psaltery to rebec and various percussion instruments, and the program is very well organized to maximize the variety of material. I should mention that the disc opens and closes with examples from the famous and oft recorded collection of Cantigas de Santa Maria, songs in the same style and from the same period but with religious texts of devotion to the Virgin Mary. The first song, in a lilting triple meter, is a perfect combination of earthly sensuality and spiritual love, an apt introduction to what follows. Combine these delights with excellent sound and Cantigas de Amigo is a must for any early music collection.
--David Vernier, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

1. Alborada gallega by Traditional
Performer:  Shira Kammen (Rebec), Peter Maund (Percussion), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano),
Leslie Bonnett (Voice), Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice), Shira Cion (Voice),
Bon Singer (Voice), Eva Palviainen (Harp), Diana Rowan (Harp),
Betty Nelson (Harp), Lily Storm (Voice), Ann Moorhead (Voice),
Janet Kutulas (Voice), Juliana Graffagna (Voice), Deborah Dietrich (Voice),
Kit Higginson (Recorder), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp), Shira Kammen (Vielle),
Kit Higginson (Psaltery)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Notes: Arranged: Ensemble Alcatraz 
2. Sen meu amigo by Shira Kammen
Performer:  Lily Storm (Voice), Ann Moorhead (Voice), Janet Kutulas (Voice),
Juliana Graffagna (Voice), Deborah Dietrich (Voice), Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice),
Shira Cion (Voice), Leslie Bonnett (Voice), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano),
Peter Maund (Percussion), Shira Kammen (Rebec), Shira Kammen (Vielle),
Kit Higginson (Psaltery), Kit Higginson (Recorder), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp),
Betty Nelson (Harp), Diana Rowan (Harp), Eva Palviainen (Harp),
Bon Singer (Voice)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Period: 20th Century 
3. Alvorada by Traditional
Performer:  Lily Storm (Voice), Ann Moorhead (Voice), Janet Kutulas (Voice),
Juliana Graffagna (Voice), Deborah Dietrich (Voice), Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice),
Shira Cion (Voice), Leslie Bonnett (Voice), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano),
Peter Maund (Percussion), Shira Kammen (Rebec), Shira Kammen (Vielle),
Kit Higginson (Psaltery), Kit Higginson (Recorder), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp),
Betty Nelson (Harp), Diana Rowan (Harp), Eva Palviainen (Harp),
Bon Singer (Voice)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Period: Medieval 
Written: 13th Century; Portugal 
Notes: Arranged: Kit Higginson 
4. Enas verdes ervas by Shira Kammen
Performer:  Lily Storm (Voice), Ann Moorhead (Voice), Janet Kutulas (Voice),
Juliana Graffagna (Voice), Deborah Dietrich (Voice), Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice),
Shira Cion (Voice), Leslie Bonnett (Voice), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano),
Peter Maund (Percussion), Shira Kammen (Rebec), Shira Kammen (Vielle),
Kit Higginson (Psaltery), Kit Higginson (Recorder), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp),
Betty Nelson (Harp), Diana Rowan (Harp), Eva Palviainen (Harp),
Bon Singer (Voice)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Period: 20th Century 
5. Levantous' a velida by Kit Higginson
Performer:  Shira Cion (Voice), Leslie Bonnett (Voice), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano),
Peter Maund (Percussion), Shira Kammen (Rebec), Shira Kammen (Vielle),
Kit Higginson (Psaltery), Kit Higginson (Recorder), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp),
Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice), Deborah Dietrich (Voice), Juliana Graffagna (Voice),
Janet Kutulas (Voice), Ann Moorhead (Voice), Lily Storm (Voice),
Betty Nelson (Harp), Bon Singer (Voice), Eva Palviainen (Harp),
Diana Rowan (Harp)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Period: 20th Century 
6. Cantigas de Santa María: no 10, Rosa de Rosas by Alfons X (El Sabio)
Performer:  Janet Kutulas (Voice), Ann Moorhead (Voice), Lily Storm (Voice),
Eva Palviainen (Harp), Deborah Dietrich (Voice), Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice),
Shira Cion (Voice), Leslie Bonnett (Voice), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano),
Peter Maund (Percussion), Shira Kammen (Rebec), Shira Kammen (Vielle),
Kit Higginson (Psaltery), Betty Nelson (Harp), Diana Rowan (Harp),
Bon Singer (Voice), Juliana Graffagna (Voice), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp),
Kit Higginson (Recorder)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Period: Medieval 
Written: 13th Century; Spain 
Notes: Arranged: Cheryl Ann Fulton 
7. Cantigas de Santa María: no 11, Macar ome per folia by Alfons X (El Sabio)
Performer:  Shira Kammen (Rebec), Shira Kammen (Vielle), Kit Higginson (Psaltery),
Kit Higginson (Recorder), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp), Peter Maund (Percussion)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble
Period: Medieval 
Written: 13th Century; Spain 
Notes: Arranged: Cheryl Ann Fulton, Kit Higginson, Shira Kammen and Peter Maund 
8. Cantigas de Santa María: no 380, Sen calar by Alfons X (El Sabio)
Performer:  Kit Higginson (Psaltery), Shira Kammen (Vielle), Peter Maund (Percussion),
Shira Kammen (Rebec), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano), Leslie Bonnett (Voice),
Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice), Shira Cion (Voice), Deborah Dietrich (Voice),
Juliana Graffagna (Voice), Ann Moorhead (Voice), Janet Kutulas (Voice),
Lily Storm (Voice), Betty Nelson (Harp), Diana Rowan (Harp),
Eva Palviainen (Harp), Kit Higginson (Recorder), Bon Singer (Voice),
Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Period: Medieval 
Written: 13th Century; Spain 
9. Por Deus by Anonymous
Performer:  Lily Storm (Voice), Ann Moorhead (Voice), Janet Kutulas (Voice),
Juliana Graffagna (Voice), Deborah Dietrich (Voice), Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice),
Shira Cion (Voice), Leslie Bonnett (Voice), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano),
Peter Maund (Percussion), Shira Kammen (Rebec), Shira Kammen (Vielle),
Kit Higginson (Psaltery), Kit Higginson (Recorder), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp),
Betty Nelson (Harp), Diana Rowan (Harp), Eva Palviainen (Harp),
Bon Singer (Voice)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Period: Medieval 
Written: 13th Century; Catalonia, Spain 
10. Bailemos nos ja todas by Kit Higginson
Performer:  Leslie Bonnett (Voice), Shira Kammen (Vielle), Kit Higginson (Recorder),
Juliana Graffagna (Voice), Ann Moorhead (Voice), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano),
Peter Maund (Percussion), Lily Storm (Voice), Kit Higginson (Psaltery),
Bon Singer (Voice), Eva Palviainen (Harp), Diana Rowan (Harp),
Betty Nelson (Harp), Deborah Dietrich (Voice), Janet Kutulas (Voice),
Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice), Shira Cion (Voice), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp),
Shira Kammen (Rebec)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Period: 20th Century 
11. Cantigas (7) de amigo: Ondas do mar de Vigo by Martin Codax
Performer:  Betty Nelson (Harp), Lily Storm (Voice), Cheryl Ann Fulton (Harp),
Ann Moorhead (Voice), Shira Cion (Voice), Kit Higginson (Recorder),
Kit Higginson (Psaltery), Shira Kammen (Vielle), Shira Kammen (Rebec),
Peter Maund (Percussion), Susan Rode Morris (Soprano), Leslie Bonnett (Voice),
Catherine Rose Crowther (Voice), Deborah Dietrich (Voice), Juliana Graffagna (Voice),
Janet Kutulas (Voice), Diana Rowan (Harp), Eva Palviainen (Harp),
Bon Singer (Voice)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA,  Angelorum
Period: Medieval 
Written: circa 1230; Galicia 

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