Classical Sunday: Schütz’s Schwanengesang

Beautiful, and somewhat haunting.

Heinrich Schütz: Schwanengesang – Hilliard Ensemble

Opus ultimum (Der Schwanengesang)

Track Listings

  1. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Psalm 119, SWV 482: I. Wohl denen, die ohne Wandel leben (Aleph und Beth)
  2. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Psalm 119, SWV 483: II. Tue wohl deinem Knechte (Gimel und Daleth)
  3. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Psalm 119, SWV 484: III. Zeige mir, Herr, den Weg deiner Rechte (He und Vav)
  4. Der Schwanengesang, Op 13 – Psalm 119, SWV 485: IV Gedenke deinem Knechte an dein Wort (Dsain und Chet)
  5. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Psalm 119, SWV 486: V. Du tust Guts deinem Knechte (Thet und Jod)
  6. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Psalm 119, SWV 487: VI. Meine Seele verlanget nach deinem Heil (Caph und Lamed)
  7. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Psalm 119, SWV 488: VII. Wie habe ich dein Gesetze so lieb (Mem und Nun)
  8. Der Schwanengesang, Op 13 – Psalm 119, SWV 489: VIII Ich hasse die Flattergeister (Samech und Ain)
  9. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Psalm 119, SWV 490: IX. Deine Zeugnisse sind wunderbarlich (Pe und Zade)
  10. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Psalm 119, SWV 491: X. Ich rufe von ganzem Herzen (Koph und Resch)
  11. Der Schwanengesang, Op 13 – Psalm 119, SWV 492: XI Die Fursten verfolgen mich ohn Ursach (Schin und Tav)
  12. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Psalm 100, SWV 493: XII. Jauchzet dem Herren alle Welt
  13. Der Schwanengesang, Op.13 – Deutsches Magnificat, SWV 494: XIII. Meine Seele erhebt den Herren

The Hilliard Ensemble
Knabenchor Hannover
London Baroque

Heinz Hennig direction

Heinrich Schütz (1585 – 1672) was a German composer and organist, generally regarded as the most important German composer before Johann Sebastian Bach, as well as one of the most important composers of the 17th century. He is commemorated as a musician in the Calendar of Saints of some North American Lutheran churches on 28 July with Johann Sebastian Bach and George Friedrich Händel.

Cover: Asen’s Fortress in Asenovgrad, Bulgaria

Classical Sunday: Hammerschmidt’s Sacred Works

Performed by the Ensemble Weser-Renaissance Bremen

Sacred Works. Andreas Hammerschmidt (1611 – 1675)

* Herr unser Herrscher
* Anima mea liquefacta est
* Ein jegliches hat seine Zeit
* O Domine, quia ego servus tuus sum
* Herr, ich habe lieb die Stätte Deines Hauses
* Christ lag in Todesbanden
* Nun danket alle Gott
* Wenn der Herr die Gefangenen
* Paratum cor meum
* Da pacem Domine
* Nun lob mein Seel den Herren
* De profundis clamavi
* Inter brachia Salvatoris mei
* Herzlich lieb hab ich Dich
* Gelobet seist du Jesu Christ
* Vom Himmel hoch

Performed by the Ensemble Weser-Renaissance Bremen with Manfred Cordes.

Andreas Hammerschmidt (1611 or 1612 – 29 October 1675) was a German Bohemian composer and organist of the early to middle Baroque era.  He was one of the most significant and popular composers of sacred music in Germany in the middle 17th century.

Classical Sunday: Buxtehude’s Seven Sonatas Op. 2

Performed by the Purcell Quartet

Dieterich Buxtehude (1637 – 1707):  Seven Sonatas Op. 2

1. Sonata in B flat major, Op. 2/1, BuxWV 259
2. Sonata in D major, Op. 2/2, BuxWV 260 7:28
3. Sonata in G minor, Op. 2/3, BuxWV 261 19:24
4. Sonata in C minor, Op. 2/4, BuxWV 262 30:00
5. Sonata in A major, Op. 2/5, BuxWV 263 37:10
6. Sonata in E major, Op. 2/6, BuxWV 264 45:59
7. Sonata in F major, Op. 2/7, BuxWV 265 55:17

Performed by the Purcell Quartet.

In the video:  An Elegant Company Playing Music by Dirck Hals (1591-1656)

Featured an old engraving of the city of Lübeck, where Buxtehude died.  Today, the city lies in the northernmost German province of Schleswig-Holstein, but when Buxehude lived there, the Free City of Lübeck belonged to the Holy Roman Empire.

Classical Sunday: Allegri’s Miserere mei Deus

I know it’s not Holy Week, but this is just too beautiful to wait for half a year or so to post it.

Gregorio AllegriMiserere mei Deus

The original translation of the psalm used for the piece was in Latin:

Miserere mei, Deus: secundum magnam misericordiam tuam.
Et secundum multitudinem miserationum tuarum, dele iniquitatem meam.
Amplius lava me ab iniquitate mea: et a peccato meo munda me.
Quoniam iniquitatem meam ego cognosco: et peccatum meum contra me est semper.
Tibi soli peccavi, et malum coram te feci: ut justificeris in sermonibus tuis, et vincas cum judicaris.
Ecce enim in iniquitatibus conceptus sum: et in peccatis concepit me mater mea.
Ecce enim veritatem dilexisti: incerta et occulta sapientiae tuae manifestasti mihi.
Asperges me hysopo, et mundabor: lavabis me, et super nivem dealbabor.
Auditui meo dabis gaudium et laetitiam: et exsultabunt ossa humiliata.
Averte faciem tuam a peccatis meis: et omnes iniquitates meas dele.
Cor mundum crea in me, Deus: et spiritum rectum innova in visceribus meis.
Ne proiicias me a facie tua: et spiritum sanctum tuum ne auferas a me.
Redde mihi laetitiam salutaris tui: et spiritu principali confirma me.
Docebo iniquos vias tuas: et impii ad te convertentur.
Libera me de sanguinibus, Deus, Deus salutis meae: et exsultabit lingua mea justitiam tuam.
Domine, labia mea aperies: et os meum annuntiabit laudem tuam.
Quoniam si voluisses sacrificium, dedissem utique: holocaustis non delectaberis.
Sacrificium Deo spiritus contribulatus: cor contritum, et humiliatum, Deus, non despicies.
Benigne fac, Domine, in bona voluntate tua Sion: ut aedificentur muri Ierusalem.
Tunc acceptabis sacrificium justitiae, oblationes, et holocausta: tunc imponent super altare tuum vitulos.

This translation is from the 1662 Book of Common Prayer and is used in Ivor Atkins’ English edition of the Miserere (published by Novello):

Have mercy upon me, O God, after Thy great goodness
According to the multitude of Thy mercies do away mine offences.
Wash me thoroughly from my wickedness: and cleanse me from my sin.
For I acknowledge my faults: and my sin is ever before me.
Against Thee only have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that Thou mightest be justified in Thy saying, and clear when Thou art judged.
Behold, I was shapen in wickedness: and in sin hath my mother conceived me.
But lo, Thou requirest truth in the inward parts: and shalt make me to understand wisdom secretly.
Thou shalt purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: Thou shalt wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Thou shalt make me hear of joy and gladness: that the bones which Thou hast broken may rejoice.
Turn Thy face from my sins: and put out all my misdeeds.
Make me a clean heart, O God: and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from Thy presence: and take not Thy Holy Spirit from me.
O give me the comfort of Thy help again: and stablish me with Thy free Spirit.
Then shall I teach Thy ways unto the wicked: and sinners shall be converted unto Thee.
Deliver me from blood-guiltiness, O God, Thou that art the God of my health: and my tongue shall sing of Thy righteousness.
Thou shalt open my lips, O Lord: and my mouth shall shew [show] Thy praise.
For Thou desirest no sacrifice, else would I give it Thee: but Thou delightest not in burnt-offerings.
The sacrifice of God is a troubled spirit: a broken and contrite heart, O God, shalt Thou not despise.
O be favourable and gracious unto Sion: build Thou the walls of Jerusalem.
Then shalt Thou be pleased with the sacrifice of righteousness, with the burnt-offerings and oblations: then shall they offer young bullocks upon Thine altar.

Classical Sunday: Some of Vivaldi’s Sacred Choral Works

Here’s something a bit more contemplative.

Antonio Vivaldi’s sacred choral works (selection)

01. Stabat Mater RV 621     00:00
02. Nisi Dominus RV 608    18:55
03. Salve Regina RV 616     41:41

James Bowman
Andreas Scholl
Chiara Banchini
Paul Dyer
Christopher Hogwood
Academy of Ancient Music
Ensemble 415

Classical Sunday: Purcell’s King Arthur

In 1691, Henry Purcell wrote the music for “King Arthur, or The British Worthy”.

King Arthur, or The British Worthy.  A semi-opera by Henry Purcell (1691)

Henry Purcell (10 September 1659 – 21 November 1695) is generally considered to be one of the greatest English composers.  Purcell’s legacy was a uniquely English form of Baroque music.  In 1691, he wrote the music for what is sometimes considered his dramatic masterpiece, King Arthur, or The British Worthy, which is our pick for this beautiful spring Sunday.

King Arthur, or The British Worthy

1-3. King Arthur Overture
4. King Arthur Act I: Woden, First to Thee
5. King Arthur Act I: The Lot is Cast, Brave Souls
6. King Arthur Act I: I Call to Woden’s Hall
7. King Arthur Act I: Come If You Dare – First Act Tune
8. King Arthur Act II: Hither, This Way
9. King Arthur Act II: Let Not a Moon-born Elf
10. King Arthur Act II: Hither, This Way
11. King Arthur Act II: Come, Follow Me
12. King Arthur Act II: How Blest Are Shepherds
13. King Arthur Act II: Symphony – Shepherd, Leave Decoying
14. King Arthur Act II: Come Shepherds, Lead Up – Hornpipe
15. King Arthur Act II: Second Act Tune
16. King Arthur Act III: Prélude – What Ho!
17. King Arthur Act III: What Power Art Thou
18. King Arthur Act III: Thou Doting Fool
19. King Arthur Act III: Great Love
20. King Arthur Act III: No Part of My Dominion
21. King Arthur Act III: Prélude
22. King Arthur Act III: See We Assemble – Dance
23. King Arthur Act III: Tis I That Have Warm’d Ye
24. King Arthur Act III: Sound a Parley – Tis Love
25. King Arthur Act III: Third Act Tune – Hornpipe
26. King Arthur Act IV: Aire
27. King Arthur Act IV: Two Daughters of This Aged Stream
28. King Arthur Act IV: Passacaglia
29. King Arthur Act V: Trumpet Tune
30. King Arthur Act V: Ye Blust’ring Brethren of the Skies
31. King Arthur Act V: Symphony
32. King Arthur Act V: Round Thy Coasts
33. King Arthur Act V: For Folded Flocks
34. King Arthur Act V: Your Hay It Is Mowed
35. King Arthur Act V: Fairest Isle
36. King Arthur Act V: You Say ‘Tis Love
37. King Arthur Act V: Trumpet Tune
38. King Arthur Act V: Saint George
39. King Arthur Act V: Our Natives
40. King Arthur Act V: Chaconne

BarokOpera Amsterdam
Frédérique Chauvet, direction

Wendy Roobol, soprano
Mijke Sekhuis, soprano
Klaartje van Veldhoven, soprano
Derek Lee Ragin, countertenor
Gunther Vandeven, countertenor
Lester Lardenoye, countertenor
Mattijs Hoogendijk, tenor
Joost van Velzen, tenor
Pieter Hendriks, baritone
Ragnar van Linden van den Heuvell, baritone
Bas Kuijlenburg, baritone
Wiebe Pier Cnossen, baritone

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