1615: Gabrieli in Venice

1615: Gabrieli in Venice

by Choir of King's College, Cambridge

SACD(Super Audio CD - SACD Hybrid / with Blu-Ray Audio)


This album stands out from the common run of Gabrieli releases in several ways. One is simply that the quintessentially British cathedral sound of the Choir of King's College, Cambridge, with its delicate boy sopranos, is not what most listeners will be expecting from music written for the sumptuous and complex sound environment of St. Mark's in Venice, with its big ensembles of multiple choruses and brass groups. Obviously your own reaction to hearing this music transplanted to pure English cathedral ground will be personal, but don't dismiss it out of hand; the choir at St. Mark's early in the 17th century was smaller than it became later on, and it is likely that it involved the participation of boys. The instrumental group, Her Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts, may also be closer to what Gabrieli used than are the common glittery brass ensembles. Second, the album contains a reconstruction of the Christmas motet "Quem vidistis pastores?," which has come down to us in a version from the 1615 "Symphoniae Sacrae" that the performers argue was much simplified. The new version is effective, breaking up the texture of the whole. Third, the SACD engineering work from the choir's own engineering staff is superb. This sounds like no other Gabrieli recording you've ever heard, with precise interactions and delicate boy solos replacing the usual wash of rich sound, and whatever you think of the whole interpretation, you're likely to find it impressive -- and the more impressive the better your equipment. You also get a Blu-ray disc of the performance for the full effect. A real engineering tour de force, this album represents something new for the Choir of King's College, and a new perspective on Gabrieli.

Product Details

Release Date: 11/13/2015
Label: Choir King's College
UPC: 0822231701224
catalogNumber: 12


  1. Litanae BVM, litany motet for 8 voices
  2. Litanae BVM, litany motet for 8 voices

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