Notes and Editorial Reviews
Rome – the ‘Eternal’ City. Once the capital of a republic and empire which defined the Western world in ancient times and left indelible imprints thereafter both physically and spiritually. A city of unparalleled beauty, a source of learning, and a capital of the arts which has inspired countless pilgrimages. A city which motivated the composers on this album to create some of their finest works including one of the most famous pieces of choral music ever written – Allegri’s Miserere. This album concentrates on that call to Rome which was irresistible for the Flemish composer, Josquin, and the Spaniard, Victoria. Here they sit alongside Felice Anerio and Gregorio Allegri who spent their lives in Rome in the service of the Papal chapels.
At their best, The Sixteen and their director Harry Christophers strike an exciting balance between informed historical performance and broad public appeal. The Call of Rome falls into this group, with limpid performances of some Renaissance favorites, including the most favorite of all, the Miserere of Gregorio Allegri. Christophers and The Sixteen inquire into the role of Rome in the music of the later 16th century, setting two native-born Romans, Allegri and the underrated Felice Anerio, with two composers, Josquin Desprez and Victoria, who felt "the call to Rome." The program holds together, and the singing is up to the usual high standard of The Sixteen. The album is a good place to start for those new to The Sixteen and is also worth the time of those familiar with the music of the 16th century.
– All Music Guide (James Manheim)