Alessandro Scarlatti: Vespro della Beata Vergine

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Manheim
Those surprised by the existence of a "Vespro della beata vergine" Vespers of the Blessed Virgin by Alessandro Scarlatti can take comfort in the fact that there is actually no such thing; what's on offer here is a collection of psalm settings along with a hymn and "Magnificat" that could have been used for the Vespers service during Scarlatti's time. But, noted Susanne Fontaine, the same is true of Claudio Monteverdi's famous set of Vespers of 1610, which was a compilation rather than a unified work. Whatever the origins of Scarlatti's pieces, they do seem to fit together nicely as a set, evincing a mixture of Baroque Catholic traditionalism and operatic thinking. Several...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Manheim
Those surprised by the existence of a "Vespro della beata vergine" Vespers of the Blessed Virgin by Alessandro Scarlatti can take comfort in the fact that there is actually no such thing; what's on offer here is a collection of psalm settings along with a hymn and "Magnificat" that could have been used for the Vespers service during Scarlatti's time. But, noted Susanne Fontaine, the same is true of Claudio Monteverdi's famous set of Vespers of 1610, which was a compilation rather than a unified work. Whatever the origins of Scarlatti's pieces, they do seem to fit together nicely as a set, evincing a mixture of Baroque Catholic traditionalism and operatic thinking. Several of the psalms work chant material into contrapuntal choral sections, contrasting it with more florid solo passages. It's a simple concept, and one very much of its Roman time and place, but it's also quite unusual within the Baroque as a whole, and Frank Markowitsch and his Vokalakademie Berlin a small, young, adult mixed-gender choir deliver performances that are both natural and musical, catching the dynamics of the style. The capstone is a 23-minute setting of the "Magnificat" that exploits the sacred-secular contrasts beautifully, building up a long sequence of subtly contrasting sections. It is a superbly sensitive rendering of the Magnificat text, and it belongs in the repertories of choirs great and small. This is a triumph for Germany's early music scene and Leipzig's Rondeau Productions label.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/31/2012
  • Label: Rondeau
  • EAN: 4037408060622
  • Catalog Number: 6062
  • Sales rank: 258,296

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Dixit Dominus (No. 1) (Psalm 109), for chorus & organ - Martin Luther & Alessandro Scarlatti (10:22)
  2. 2 Nisi Dominus aedificaverit (No. 1) (Psalm 126), for soprano, alto, chorus, 2 violins & continuo: Nisi Dominus - Martin Luther & Alessandro Scarlatti (2:11)
  3. 3 Lauda Jerusalem Dominum, offertory for chorus & organ - Martin Luther & Alessandro Scarlatti (2:52)
  4. 4 Magnificat for soloists, chorus, 2 violins, viola & continuo in D major - Martin Luther & Alessandro Scarlatti (22:31)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Vokalakademie Berlin Primary Artist
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