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Kaspars Putnins - Alfred Schnittke & Arvo Pärt : Choral Works

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Alfred Schnittke & Arvo Pärt : Choral Works

Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Kaspars Putnins

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Alfred Schnittke and Arvo Pärt have both lived through the intense decades of upheavals that preceded the fall of the Soviet Union. From the 1970s, religion returned to public life as restrictions around it were relaxed. Schnittke turned towards Christianity, while remaining open towards Eastern religions. Arvo Pärt, from a family of Lutheran Estonians, embraced the Orthodox faith in the 1970s. The two composers both began to incorporate religious themes into their work, moving decisively away from the modernist abstraction of their early work. Schnittke wrote three religious works of great power: a Requiem in 1975 which could only be played in secret, disguised (what ignominy...) as stage music in a Muscovite production of Schiller's Don Carlos. His Choir Concerto, also with a religious theme, was performed in Moscow in 1986 after overcoming a daunting series of bureaucratic obstacles. On the other hand, the Penitential Psalms were performed out in the open in 1988 in as part of celebrations to mark a thousand years of Christianity in Russia. The style of this immense masterpiece is in line with Orthodox liturgical tradition, but Schnittke extends traditional principles to create modern sounds - in particular, rhythmical and harmonic modifications, which lend the work an intense richness.


 


Like Schnittke's Penitential Psalms, the Magnificat and Nunc dimittis by Pärt are composed in a semi-liturgical style. The Magnificat dates back to one year after Schnittke's score was composed, in 1989. Pärt had been living in Berlin since 1981, where he refined his "tintinnabuli" technique. The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir which plays here is one of Estonia's foremost chamber music ensembles. Founded in 1981, it has been directed by Kaspars Putniņš since 2014. Its choral repertoire stretches from Gregorian chant and baroque to more contemporary music, with a particular focus on the work of Estonian composers, which the Choir works hard to spread beyond the country's borders. © SM/Qobuz

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Alfred Schnittke & Arvo Pärt : Choral Works

Kaspars Putnins

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Psalms of Repentance (Alfred Schnittke)

1
I. Plakassja Adamo pred rajemo ssedja (Adam sat weeping at the gates of paradise)
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
00:02:43

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

2
II. Priimi mja, pustini, Jako mati tschado sswoje (O wilderness, gather me to your silent and gentle lap)
Raul Mikson
00:04:09

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor - Raul Mikson, Artist, MainArtist

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

3
III. Ssego radi nischtschjesm (That is why I live in poverty)
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
00:02:48

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

4
IV. Dusche moja, potschto wo gresech prebiwaeschi (My soul, why are you in a state of sin?)
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
00:02:22

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

5
V. Okajanne ubogii tschelowetsche (O Man, doomed and wretched)
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
00:03:03

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

6
VI. Srja korable naprassno pristawajema (When they beheld the ship that suddenly came)
Maria Melaha
00:01:47

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor - Karolina Kriis, Artist - Marianne Pärna, Artist - Maria Melaha, Artist, MainArtist - Ave Hännikäinen, Artist

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

7
VII. Dusche moja, kako ne ustraschaeschissja (Oh my soul, why are you not afraid?)
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
00:05:14

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

8
VIII. Aschtsche choschtscheschi pobediti Beswremjannuju petschal (If you wish to overcome unending sorrow)
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
00:01:57

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

9
IX. Wospomjanuch schitije sswoje klirosskoje As nepotrebni (I have reflected on my life as a monk)
Raul Mikson
00:06:30

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor - Raul Mikson, Artist, MainArtist

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

10
X. Pridjetje, christonossenii ljudije (Christian people, gather together!)
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
00:03:40

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

11
XI. Nago isidocho, na platsch ssei (I entered this life of tears a naked infant)
Raul Mikson
00:03:32

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor - Toomas Tohert, Artist - Raul Mikson, Artist, MainArtist

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

12
XII. [wordless humming]
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
00:07:31

Alfred Schnittke, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

Magnificat (Arvo Pärt)

13
Magnificat
Kaia Urb
00:07:23

Arvo Pärt, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir - Kaia Urb, Artist, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

Nunc dimittis (Arvo Pärt)

14
Nunc dimittis
Kaia Urb
00:07:05

Arvo Pärt, Composer - Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Choir - Kaia Urb, Artist, MainArtist - Kaspars Putnins, Conductor

(C) 2018 BIS (P) 2018 BIS

Album Description

Alfred Schnittke and Arvo Pärt have both lived through the intense decades of upheavals that preceded the fall of the Soviet Union. From the 1970s, religion returned to public life as restrictions around it were relaxed. Schnittke turned towards Christianity, while remaining open towards Eastern religions. Arvo Pärt, from a family of Lutheran Estonians, embraced the Orthodox faith in the 1970s. The two composers both began to incorporate religious themes into their work, moving decisively away from the modernist abstraction of their early work. Schnittke wrote three religious works of great power: a Requiem in 1975 which could only be played in secret, disguised (what ignominy...) as stage music in a Muscovite production of Schiller's Don Carlos. His Choir Concerto, also with a religious theme, was performed in Moscow in 1986 after overcoming a daunting series of bureaucratic obstacles. On the other hand, the Penitential Psalms were performed out in the open in 1988 in as part of celebrations to mark a thousand years of Christianity in Russia. The style of this immense masterpiece is in line with Orthodox liturgical tradition, but Schnittke extends traditional principles to create modern sounds - in particular, rhythmical and harmonic modifications, which lend the work an intense richness.


 


Like Schnittke's Penitential Psalms, the Magnificat and Nunc dimittis by Pärt are composed in a semi-liturgical style. The Magnificat dates back to one year after Schnittke's score was composed, in 1989. Pärt had been living in Berlin since 1981, where he refined his "tintinnabuli" technique. The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir which plays here is one of Estonia's foremost chamber music ensembles. Founded in 1981, it has been directed by Kaspars Putniņš since 2014. Its choral repertoire stretches from Gregorian chant and baroque to more contemporary music, with a particular focus on the work of Estonian composers, which the Choir works hard to spread beyond the country's borders. © SM/Qobuz

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