Minkowski gives a characteristically ebullient, highly charged performance.Graham Sadler, BBC Music Magazine
Marc-Antoine Charpentier (1643 - February 24, 1704) was a French composer of the Baroque era.
He was a prolific and versatile composer, producing music of the highest quality in several genres. His mastery in the composition of sacred vocal music was recognized and acknowledged by his contemporaries.
This recording of the Poème Harmonique revitalizes Charpentier's and Lully's Te Deum, two magnificent pieces of sacred music celebrating the Sun King's victory and recovery. Lully, who was of Italian origin, found the essence and style of French art, while Charpentier gave the emotion and composition methods he had learned from the Italians to the music of his country. This is the story of two musicians, two countries, two aesthetics, and two fundamental stakes. Lully became a lauded composer, outshining Charpentier and relegating him to an undeserved subpar position.
On this latest BR-KLASSIK recording of sacred music by Estonian composer Arvo Pärt (b. 1935), the regularly award-winning Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks, conducted by Peter Dijkstra, is joined by the Münchner Rundfunkorchester, a frequent occurrence in their concert series that regularly include sacred music from the 19th through the 21st c. The present three compositions were written in 1984 and 1990 in the composer's own tintinnabulation style of composition (from the Latin word for the 'ringing of bells'). In his Te Deum, Pärt makes a conscious departure from the traditionally powerful and festive sound of such precursors as Charpentier, Bruckner and Verdi. The restraint of the Wallfahrtslied (Pilgrims' Song), a setting of Psalm 121, evokes the ancient Judeo-Christian tradition of psalm recitation. The Berliner Messe (Berlin Mass) is so named because it was first performed in the city's St. Hedwig's Cathedral (1990) to mark the German Katholikentag (Catholics Day).
When Henry Madin’s Te Deum for the victories of Louis XV was performed in the Chapelle Royale at Versailles in 2015, it was the first time it had been performed since its premiere in the eighteenth century. Reviving this work for the modern day is Stradivaria, the Baroque ensemble of Nantes, and Les Cris de Paris, the latter two conducted by Daniel Cuiller and Geoffroy Jourdain, respectively. Along with Te Deum, this album also features Madin’s Diligam te, Domine, a grand motet for large chorus.
Matthew Best began his career as a bass, singing at Covent Garden and at other leading operatic venues throughout the world. But since the mid-'80s he has turned increasingly toward conducting, recording many choral/orchestral and operatic works for Hyperion Records. Over the years his singing range has changed as well, placing him in the category of bass-baritone and including roles such as Scarpia and Amfortas.
The world has not yet fully discovered the riches of the impressive music libraries and archives of Portugal. They testify to the often complex trajectories followed all over Europe by a repertoire of splendid pieces, many of them showing the extent to which the Italian style had taken root in eighteenth-century Portugal. The superb mass by Pergolesi recorded here is a highly characteristic example. But the ensemble Turicum wanted to go even further in their exploration of this repertoire, accompanying the mass with performances of works by composers now totally (and unjustly) unknown, such as Antonio Gallassi and David Perez, not to mention Leonardo leo, acknowledged in his own time as a supreme master of sacred music.
These recordings were produced in the 1980s by the Radio of the German Democratic Republic from performances given in the historic Catholic Court Church in Dresden.