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Vesperae De Confessore - Monteverdi: Choral Works / Gini

Release Date: 05/29/2007 
Label:  Dynamic   Catalog #: 543   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Roberto Gini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Concerto EnsembleWorld Chamber ChoirGruppo Vocale Laurence Feininger
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

MONTEVERDI Vesperae de confessore Roberto Gini, cond; Ens Concerto; World CCh; Gruppo Vocale Laurence Feininger DYNAMIC CDS 543 (68:13 Text and Translation)

Dixit I (1650). Credidi. Beatus vir II (1640). Laudate pueri III. Memento Domine. Magnificat II. Laudate pueri II. Laetatus sum II. Lauda Jerusalem II

Read more /> Monteverdi never wrote a work by this title, but Gini has taken some pieces from Selva morale e spirituale and Messa . . . e Salmi to complete a celebration of Vespers for St. Augustine, bishop, confessor, and Doctor of the Church. I have clarified some of the titles that are identified only in the notes. In addition, enough chants are supplied to make a complete Office. When I reviewed a recent recording of the complete Selva morale (25:3), I made it clear that these works have by no means been neglected during the years after Michel Corboz’s previous set, as the companion review asserted, for I listed numerous examples of such compilations as this one, in which the composer’s intention of supplying psalms, hymns, and canticles for various Offices of Vespers have been carried out. This makes a lot more sense than a succession of multiple settings of each text, no matter how useful a complete recorded set of the two published volumes might seem.

Gini fudges a bit in his choice of psalms. Limiting his choice to “da capella” settings, he finds that none of the five settings of Confitebor in the two volumes are suitable, so he substitutes Ps. 115, Credidi , for the second psalm, a possibility that he says was “envisaged” at the time. At the end, he adds the remaining three “da capella” psalms that were not included. The recording was made in the days after a public celebration of the Vespers on the feast of St. Augustine (August 28) in Catania two years ago. The Feininger group, named after the brilliant Jesuit scholar of music of the 15th and 17th centuries, sings the chants. The hymn Iste confessor alternates between chant and organ because there are no “da capella” settings by Monteverdi.

The 25 voices of the World Chamber Choir, a new formation united for the First Val di Noto International Festival “Magie Barocche,” is a splendid aggregation, responsive to Gini’s conception of a liturgical celebration recreated—or created, as he concedes—from 17th-century practice. The church of San Giuliano was used for both the public performance and the recording, a space that contributes to the aura of liturgical celebration. This program is an outstanding success, highly recommended for the most appropriate way to hear the music that Monteverdi wrote for St. Mark’s.

FANFARE: J. F. Weber
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Works on This Recording

Selva morale e spirituale: Excerpt(s) by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Roberto Gini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Concerto Ensemble,  World Chamber Choir,  Gruppo Vocale Laurence Feininger
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1640; Italy 
Messa e salmi: Excerpt(s) by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Roberto Gini
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Concerto Ensemble,  World Chamber Choir,  Gruppo Vocale Laurence Feininger
Period: Baroque 
Written: Italy 

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