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Monteverdi: Selva Morale E Spirituale Vol 2 / Christophers, The Sixteen


Release Date: 04/10/2012 
Label:  Coro   Catalog #: 16101   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Number of Discs: 1 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Also available: Monteverdi: Selva Morale E Spirituale Vol 1 / Christophers, The Sixteen

Without doubt, Monteverdi was the greatest of the early baroque European composers. He revolutionised the music of the theatre and the church by his dramatic and imaginative use of voices and instruments and by his daring harmonies and rhythms. Next to his Vespers of 1610, the Selva morale e spirituale of 1641 is his most significant and virtuosic collection of sacred music. The works featured on this second volume are both demanding and exhilarating: from the rhythmic vitality of the eight-part Dixit Dominus to the relative simplicity of the full choir’s rendering of his old
Read more style Messa à 4 da cappella, and culminating in the extraordinary bass solo, Ab aeterno ordinata sum.

R E V I E W: 3612340.az_MONTEVERDI_Laudate_Dominum_III.html

MONTEVERDI Laudate Dominum III. Confitebor I. O ciechi. Jubilet tota civitas. Messa da capella à 4. Deus tuorum militum II. Sanctorum meritis I. Crucifixus. Laudate Dominum in sanctis ejus. Et item venturus est. Ab aeterno ordinata sum. Dixit Dominus I Harry Christophers, dir; The Sixteen CORO COR 16101 (70:32 Text and Translation)

Harry Christophers’s set of the music from Claudio Monteverdi’s final publication is shaping up to be a clear alternative to its competition. We have had several virtually complete sets of these sacred works in the past decade from Konrad Junghänel ( Fanfare 25:3), Françoise Lasserre, Gabriel Garrido (both 34:4), and Claudio Cavina (34:5), with Garrido alone including all 40 pieces. While all four of those directors grouped the selections into arbitrary liturgical order, Harry Christophers has arranged his sequence for variety, and the probable four discs will include the five moral madrigals spread across all four discs and the spiritual (liturgical) pieces arranged in no particular relationship. This is an advantage for collectors who want to sample any of the singles; they can choose to buy the rest if they like what they hear. This contrasts with two other approaches; the early Michel Corboz set (available on CD since 1995 as Erato 4509-98530-2) and the later but unfinished Robert King set (see 28:5) both collected the music of Selva morale e spirituale as well as the 1650 Messa … e salmi to offer a more comprehensive survey of Monteverdi’s sacred music, while in between there were many single discs (summed up in 25:3) that chose psalms, hymns, canticles, and Marian antiphons from both publications to show how Monteverdi would have used them to sing Vespers on various feast days. (That list omitted the most recent examples from Rinaldo Alessandrini, Bernard Fabre-Garrus, and Kim Glies Nandfred.) I expressed a clear preference for the latter approach, admitting that some published pieces would fall through the cracks. These complete sets of the last decade have generally made some effort to arrange a couple of Vespers sequences, as the reviews pointed out, giving us the best of both worlds.

Still, we now have Christophers to deal with, using a vocal ensemble as Junghänel did in contrast to the larger choral and instrumental forces more commonly heard, but with a minimum of the period instruments used in that set. We hear at most (only as required) two violins, a cello, a chitarrone, a harp, and organ or harpsichord. Christophers begins and ends with psalms, puts the Mass in the middle, puts hymns before and after the Credo to break up the flow of the unaccompanied Mass, and inserts the remaining pieces in between. Oddly, he includes only two of the concertante movements from the Credo (believed to have been completed by Rovetta, as Parrott recorded it), omitting the Resurrexit. Jubilet tota civitas is odd; this motet leaves room to identify a saint, but most of the dozen recordings I checked simply sing “Est sanctus” (It is a saint). Two add the name of Theodore (“It is St. Theodore”), and two add John, but this one adds Blaise. For the exquisite performances, this series gains a special place apart from the questions of order.

FANFARE: J. F. Weber
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Works on This Recording

1.
Selva morale e spirituale: Dixit Dominus I by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1640; Italy 
2.
Selva morale e spirituale: Ab aeterno ordinato sum by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1640; Italy 
3.
Laudate Dominum by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: Italy 
4.
Selva morale e spirituale: Deus, tuorum militum II by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1640; Italy 
5.
Missa de capella a 6 "In illo tempore" by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1610; Mantua, Italy 
6.
Selva morale e spirituale: O ciechi il tanto affaticar by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1640; Italy 
7.
Selva morale e spirituale: Jubilet tota civitas by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1640; Italy 
8.
Selva morale e spirituale: Laudate Dominum omnes gentes III a 8 by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1641; Italy 
9.
Selva morale e spirituale: Sanctorum meritis by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1640; Italy 
10.
Selva morale e spirituale: Crucifixus by Claudio Monteverdi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1640; Italy 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Très beau August 25, 2012 By Pierre Chapus (Montréal, QC) See All My Reviews "Un cd merveilleux

Pierre Chapus
Montréal,Qc."
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