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Arvo Pärt: In Principio

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Eddins
This collection of music by Arvo Pärt includes six of his choral and orchestral works, five of which were written between 2000 and 2007. This is not music that breaks new ground for the composer. Its austere tone is suffused in mysticism, and it manages to sound both archaic and very new, with a surface that can seem simplistic, but which in fact is rigorously worked out. The selection, though, offers a nicely diverse sampling of pieces, some for orchestra and some for chorus and orchestra, representing a variety of moods, from the somber "Für Lennart in memoriam" to the contrapuntally lively "Mein Weg." "Für Lennart in memoriam," for string orchestra is a soulful lament...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Eddins
This collection of music by Arvo Pärt includes six of his choral and orchestral works, five of which were written between 2000 and 2007. This is not music that breaks new ground for the composer. Its austere tone is suffused in mysticism, and it manages to sound both archaic and very new, with a surface that can seem simplistic, but which in fact is rigorously worked out. The selection, though, offers a nicely diverse sampling of pieces, some for orchestra and some for chorus and orchestra, representing a variety of moods, from the somber "Für Lennart in memoriam" to the contrapuntally lively "Mein Weg." "Für Lennart in memoriam," for string orchestra is a soulful lament written to honor Lennart Meri, the president of Estonia, which reflects the textures and mood of Pärt's early choral works from the 1970s. "Mein Weg," an orchestral reflection on a sober poem by Edmond Jabès, has a perkiness that seems a little at odds with its subject matter, but it's an especially attractive piece, with more chromaticism than is usual for the composer. "Cecilia, vergine romana," for mixed voices and orchestra, is a kind of mini-cantata on the life of the third century saint and has more textural variety than is typical for a Pärt score, included a section with a rocking accompaniment reminiscent of Philip Glass. It's an engaging piece that could appeal to listeners who find the composer's more characteristic style too severe. The performing duties are divided between the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, and the Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, all conducted by Pärt specialist Tonu Kaljuste. The sound of the singers and players is ideally chaste and pure, and the performances are, in a way, passionate, not an adjective usually associated with Pärt, but the approach is successful in bringing the works to life with a special vividness. ECM's sound is clean and clear with just the right amount of resonance.
Stereophile - Robert Baird
Throughout In Principio, the singing of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir has an extraordinary unity and expressiveness, while the playing under the baton of conductor Tinu Kaljuste of both orchestras is forceful and precise.... Arvo Pärt's cosmos of sound and passion is an expanse of deep commitment and easy accessibility that, as the examples on In Principio continue to prove, is utterly unique in this terrestrial kingdom.
National Public Radio - Tom Manoff
I don't use the word masterpiece casually. But I've spent several weeks studying the musical scores of these works, examining the extraordinary details of the composer's craft. Because of that intimate involvement, I'm confident that several of these works are true masterpieces and will be heard for a long time to come.

I don't use the word masterpiece casually. But I've spent several weeks studying the musical scores of these works, examining the extraordinary details of the composer's craft. Because of that intimate involvement, I'm confident that several of these works are true masterpieces and will be heard for a long time to come.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/3/2009
  • Label: Ecm Records
  • UPC: 028947669906
  • Catalog Number: 001259902
  • Sales rank: 23,644

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–5 In principio, for mixed chorus & orchestra - Arvo Pärt & Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir (19:40)
  2. 2 La Sindone, for orchestra - Arvo Pärt & Tõnu Kaljuste (15:53)
  3. 3 Cecilia, vergine romana, for chorus & orchestra - Arvo Pärt & Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir (16:39)
  4. 4 Da Pacem Domine, for SATB chorus or soloists - Arvo Pärt & Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir (5:00)
  5. 5 Mein Weg, for 14 strings & percussion - Arvo Pärt & Tõnu Kaljuste (6:23)
  6. 6 Für Lennart in memoriam, for string orchestra - Arvo Pärt & Tõnu Kaljuste (7:22)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Tõnu Kaljuste Primary Artist
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    Avro Part keeps getting better!

    Entire CD is engaging and inspirational!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Part's In Principio

    Those listeners who are familiar with Arvo Part's (sorry, can't do an umlaut on the a) don't need any urging to buy ECM's newest release. It is very well-recorded, liturgical music which is uplifting for non-believers and I thought a little more accessible and enjoyable than the last few releases. Perhaps not up to Tabula Rasa, but highly recommended.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews