Estonian composer Arvo Part's timeless music has touched listeners for decades. He is one of the most performed living composers. This new release features eight choral pieces which were written between 1988 and 2012. These works feature some of Part's finest vocal writing, especially in the three-movement Triodion and the seven-movement Sieben Magnificat-Antiphonen.
The brief opening piece for chorus on this new release, "Da Pacem Domine," is based on a 9th century Gregorian work and has the usual, familiar–and very beautiful–Pärt-ian characteristics: a soft, endless stream of easy tritones and harmonies that make this plea for peace immensely moving. The major work, Lamentate, is scored for large orchestra and solo piano–a very unusual combination for Pärt. Even his fans will be surprised. In ten brief sections, it begins with a quiet drum roll, immediately followed by horn calls. There are forte explosions for full orchestra and piano, with heavy percussion. At times the only thing we hear is a hushed piano part with strings supporting very quietly. The effect is dark yet alluring. It ends peacefully. This is another stunning CD of Pärt's music for his fans–old and new.
This ‘themed’ programme by Da Pacem derives from a series of concerts devoted to Bach’s infamous journey on foot to hear Buxtehude play. Did he have leave of absence from his employers? Did the four month absence change his style for ever? Buxtehude achieved a staggering synthesis of the polyphonic, numerical and rhetorical traditions of his predecessors with a very personal poetry, taking care to make his music accessible to everyone, from the specialist to the layman. It is not surprising that Bach took him as his model.
PRO PACEM is a new CD-Book project that makes a plea for a world without war or terrorism and for total nuclear disarmament. It presents a sound mosaic that takes the form of a living dialogue of spiritually expressive vocal and instrumental music from a variety of repertoires from East (Armenia, Turkey, Sepharad, India, Israel and China) and West (Greece, Spain, England, Portugal, Italy, Estonia and Belgium).
For centuries, war and peace have been accompanied by music. Music was present on the battlefield, of course: the sounding of the trumpet as a signal to gather or attack, drumbeats to recruit soldiers or set them marching, battle songs to raise morale among the troops or instil fear in the bosom of the enemy. Once the hostilities were over, there was singing and dancing in the streets to celebrate peace.
The composers known collectively as the Fiamminghi made their mark in Europe in general and in Italy and in France in particular during the 15th century. Their talent and skill gained them the most important positions in the great musical establishments of the time. This collection is devoted to the leading composers of the 15th century, from those of the first generation (Guillaume Dufay, Gilles Binchois, Arnold de Lantins and Johannes Brassart) through Johannes Ockeghem, the great master of polyphonic technique, to Josquin Desprez and Pierre de La Rue, two musicians taught by Ockeghem who laid the foundations of the Ars Perfecta during the Renaissance. Also included is Jacob Obrecht, the only composer of this school whose career was based essentially in his native Flanders. Every genre of both sacred as well as secular music of the time is represented here.