Monteverdi: Vespro Della Beata Vergine

Monteverdi: Vespro Della Beata Vergine
Composer Claudio Monteverdi
Artist Marinella Pennicchi soprano
Marco Beasley tenor
Coro della Radio Svizzera, Lugano
Concerto Palatino
I Barocchisti
Diego Fasolis conductor
Format 2 CD
Cat. number 94252
EAN code 5028421942520
Release November 2011

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About this release

Dedicated to Pope Paul V, Monterverdi’s Vespers of 1610 is one of the great masterpieces of the early Baroque. The score features an amazing variety of styles – grand choral and instrumental, solo motets, two settings of the Magnificat, duets and trios in the latest monodic style, and above all, a sense of theatre, which might be explained by Monteverdi’s composition of two operas at around the same time, L’Orfeo and L’Arianna.

At this point of his life, Monteverdi was still working for the Gonzaga family and the Duke of Mantua, a far from happy situation for the composer. Underpaid, undervalued and overworked, he was looking beyond Mantua when he dedicated the 1610 Vespers to Pope Paul V in an aim to secure future employment in the church. Fittingly, large forces are called for, and the vocal parts are so challenging, even to this day, that it is no surprise that the work was never reprinted. Rather than a piece for everyday religious use, the work was intended as a calling card, a job application on the grandest scale.

Nowadays, the work receives regular performances, although the first modern performance wasn’t given until 1935. Monteverdi’s bid for a position in Rome didn’t succeed, but he did move to Venice to become maestro di capella at St Mark’s Basilica; here, the full potential of this grand yet deeply personal work could be realised to the full.

- Excellent performance, on historical instruments, by conductor Diego Fasolis, and his “Barocchisti”, and a great line of vocal soloists, among whom are the well known Marco Beasley and Marinella Pennicchi.
- Sung texts
- Booklet notes
- Recorded in 1999

Track list

Disk 1

  1. Introductio: Deus in adiutorium (MB)
  2. Antiphona I: Dum esset rex.: PSALMUS 109: Dixit Dominus (MP, AS, MB, SN, LD, AG)
  3. Concerto: Nigra sum (MB)
  4. Antiphona II: Laeva ejus, PSALMUS 112: Laudate pueri
  5. Concerto: Pulchra es (MP, AS)
  6. Antiphona III: Nigra sum, PSALMUS 121: Laetatus sum
  7. Concerto: Duo Seraphim (SN, LD, MB)
  8. Antiphona IV: Jam hiems transiit, PSALMUS 126: Nisi Dominus
  9. Concerto: Audi coelum (MB, GM, RB, FS)
  10. Antiphona V: Speciosa facta es, PSALMUS 147: Lauda Jerusalem
  11. Sonata sopra Sancta Maria
  12. Capitulum: Ecce virgo, Hymnus: Ave maris stella (MP, AS, MB)

Disk 2

  1. Versiculum: Dignare me, Antiphona ad Magnificat: Sancta Maria succurre miseris
  2. Magnificat anima mea
  3. Et exultavit (SN, LD)
  4. Quia respexit (FZ)
  5. Quia fecit (AG, DC)
  6. Et misericordia
  7. Fecit potentiam
  8. Deposuit
  9. Esurientes
  10. Suscepit Israel (MP, AS)
  11. Sicut locutus
  12. Gloria Patri (SN, MB)
  13. Sicut erat
  14. Oratio: Concede nos