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Praetorius: In Dulci Jubilo / Marlow, Trinity College Choir


Release Date: 02/21/2008 
Label:  Conifer   Catalog #: 51256   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Michael Praetorius
Conductor:  Richard Marlow
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Trinity College Choir
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 10 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Praetorius (c1571-1621) was the first great musical commentator and elaborator of the Lutheran chorale. Prolific he certainly was, with over 1,000 chorale settings (quite apart from a mass of other work in compositional and theoretical fields), but his level of invention is remarkable too. This CD presents 32 settings and one of its great merits is that in choosing chorales from the Advent, Christmas and Epiphany seasons the tunes are likely to be familiar to many listeners. So one can follow, for example, the orderly six-voice unfolding of Nun kommt der Heiden Heiland, appreciating not just Praetorius’s pliable working of the familiar melodic material, but also sensing the simple, strong theological substance the chorale bears. Rhythmic Read more wit and textural variety abound, from the catch-as-catch-can soprano duet of Wachet auf to the veritable compositional playground he creates out of Puer natus in Bethlehem for double choir. It is affectionate music of great intellect and charm.

As for the performances, perhaps the most significant issue is that Richard Marlow has opted for unaccompanied performance throughout. Praetorius himself offered exhaustive and famous advice in his Syntagma musicum (1614-19) on the use of instruments together with voices, and though a cappella performance is certainly valid, to devote a 70-minute CD to this one option out of a whole range of possibilities is rather risky. In truth, the choir’s German is really rather anglican, especially in the matter of vowel colour, and lacks the native textual accentuation that would bring the words themselves to life, yet the musical properties inherent in the settings are so nimbly and euphoniously realized that the performances (luminously recorded) are certainly enjoyable and command attention, particularly if this CD is dipped into, rather than heard at one sitting.

-- Patrick Russell, Gramophone [3/1996]
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Works on This Recording

1.
Wachet auf by Michael Praetorius
Conductor:  Richard Marlow
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Trinity College Choir
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1619; Germany 
2.
Nun komm der Heiden Heiland by Michael Praetorius
Conductor:  Richard Marlow
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Trinity College Choir
Period: Renaissance 
Written: Germany 
3.
In dulci jubilo by Michael Praetorius
Conductor:  Richard Marlow
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Trinity College Choir
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1619; Germany 
4.
Vom Himmel hoch, da komm ich her by Michael Praetorius
Conductor:  Richard Marlow
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Trinity College Choir
Period: Renaissance 
Written: Germany 
5.
Resonet in laudibus by Michael Praetorius
Conductor:  Richard Marlow
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Trinity College Choir
Period: Renaissance 
Written: Germany 
6.
Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern by Michael Praetorius
Conductor:  Richard Marlow
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Trinity College Choir
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1619; Germany 
7.
Puer natus in Bethlehem by Michael Praetorius
Conductor:  Richard Marlow
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge Trinity College Choir
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1619; Germany 

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