Gregorio Allegri: Miserere Mei

Gregorio Allegri: Miserere Mei

by St. John's College Choir, Cambridge


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Gregorio Allegri: Miserere Mei

Gregorio Allegri and his famous "Miserere" (which Mozart transcribed on one hearing) appear to be the central focus of this 2005 reissue from Meridian, but the program's roster -- Giovanni da Palestrina, Girolamo Frescobaldi, Annibale Orgas, Paolo Quagliati, Agostino Agazzari, Abundio Antonelli, Stefano Landi, and Giovanni Francesco Anerio -- reads like a who's who of composers of Roman Catholic music in the late Renaissance and early Baroque. Allegri's "Miserere" represents the austere a cappella choral style employed in the Vatican's Sistine Chapel, noted particularly for its ornamentation over a simply harmonized chant in fauxbourdon. But in this transitional period, composers were either backward-looking, as may be discerned in Antonelli's pointedly archaic "Cogitavi dies antiquos," or somewhat progressive and adventurous, as may be apparent in the concertante style of Anerio's "Jubilemus in arca Domini Dei" or in the expressive polychoral setting of Landi's "In conventendo." The Choir of St. John's College, Cambridge, directed by George Guest, is remarkably pure and finely blended, and the organ accompaniment provided by Adrian Lucas is tastefully unobtrusive. Meridian's unprocessed recording from 1988 is outstanding for the time, and sounds almost as clean and natural as later DSD.

Product Details

Release Date: 08/09/2005
Label: Meridian
UPC: 5015959452225
catalogNumber: 84522


  1. Miserere mei Deus (Psalm 51), motet for chorus
  2. Gustate et videte
  3. Exsultate Deo, motet for 5 voices (from Motets Book V)
  4. Diversarum modulationum, Book II No.10, O Mors Illa, for 2 voices & continuo
  5. Omnes Gentes
  6. Assumpta est Maria
  7. Ego Dormio
  8. Gaude Virgo
  9. Cogitavi Dies Antiquos
  10. In conventendo
  11. Jubilemus in Arca Domini Dei
  12. Pange lingua, hymn for 4 voices (from Complete Hymns)

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