VOICE OF THE BLOOD is so named because the texts of Hildegard of Bingen's songs performed here refer often to the spilled blood of St. Ursula and her 11,000 virgins. Sequentia wonderfully presents Hildegard's monophonic "song cycle" here in the order she probably intended. … Thanks, Sequentia, for bringing this savory piece of history to life!
"I think there in the field of medieval music ensemble with a better level of interpretation and musicological rigor that Sequentia Ensemble. This vinyl is a convincing example. The pity is, that at least one of its members no longer living. In memory of Barbara Thornton. "
Paul Gerhardt (12 March 1607 – 27 May 1676) was a German hymn writer. Gerhardt is considered Germany's greatest hymn writer. Many of his best-known hymns were originally published in various church hymnbooks, as for example in that for Brandenburg, which appeared in 1658. The first complete collection is the Geistliche Andachten, published in 1666-1667 by Ebeling, music director in Berlin. No hymn by Gerhardt of a later date than 1667 is known to exist.
The Rhine turned crimson when the royal princess Ursula and her eleven thousand companions were slaughtered by the Huns. Many centuries later, Hildegard of Bingen composed a plainchant office in Ursula’s honour and sent a copy to the Abbey of Villers. The singers of Psallentes♀ sing from this famous manuscript (now housed in Dendermonde).
Hildegard von Bingen has the magical ability to reach out and speak to us across the centuries. An avant-garde visionary of her day, the depth and range of her music lends itself to modern re-imaginings. Sequentiae Hildegardenses was written over a period of 12 years in a special collaboration between the composer Hugh Collins Rice and the medieval ensemble Mediva. Collins Rice, who has often been drawn to the ideas and techniques of early music, was inspired by Mediva s medieval instruments and developed a musical language for Sequentiae Hildegardenses which remains authentic and expressive in a 21st-century context, whilst also illuminating the 12th-century music of Hildegard. His music references the serene world of Hildegard's own compositions, but also reflects the darker strands in her writings.