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Raphaël Pichon|Monteverdi: Vespro della Beata Vergine

Monteverdi: Vespro della Beata Vergine

Raphaël Pichon, Pygmalion, Céline Scheen, Perrine Devillers, Lucile Richardot, Emiliano Gonzalez Toro, Zachary Wilder, Antonin Rondepierre

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It is hard to know where to begin enumerating the beauties of this release by the Pygmalion ensemble and its director, Raphaël Pichon, who enumerates his thoughts on Monteverdi's Vespro della Beata Vergine in the interview-style booklet. There are many good recordings of this work, sometimes known as the Vespers of 1610. Right from the beginning, with the exultant blaze of unchanging harmony in the opening Invitatorium that announced, just as clearly as anything in the opera Orfeo, that the musical world had changed, the effect of this performance is exceptionally powerful, but it is not only the glittering tutti that impresses. Perhaps even more than Orfeo, the Vespers marshal all the musical resources Monteverdi had at his disposal. There are operatic arias in all but text, handled perfectly by well-chosen soloists who master the ornamentation idioms of the day. There are polychoral brass pieces that show Monteverdi's development of that style prior to his move to St. Mark's in Venice. There is old-school polyphony and straight monody. In Pichon's hands, all these styles are held in perfect balance. Harmonia Mundi's sound, from the Temple du Saint-Esprit in Paris, evokes the splendor of the ducal chapel in Mantua for which the Vespers were written. There is much more that could be said, but let it suffice to observe that even those who think they know the Vespers well will rethink that position after hearing this remarkable recording, which rightfully made classical best-seller charts in the late summer of 2023.

© James Manheim /TiVo

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Monteverdi: Vespro della Beata Vergine

Raphaël Pichon

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1
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Invitatorium. Versiculum et responsorium "Deus in adjutorium"
00:02:21

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Renaud Brès, MainArtist, BassVocals

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

2
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Psalmus "Dixit dominus"
00:08:05

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

3
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Concerto "Nigra sum"
00:04:00

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Emiliano Gonzalez Toro, MainArtist, TenorSolo

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

4
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Psalmus "Laudate Pueri"
00:06:27

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

5
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Concerto "Pulchra es"
00:03:58

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Céline Scheen, MainArtist, SopranoSolo - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Perrine Devillers, MainArtist, SopranoSolo

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

6
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Psalmus "Laetatus sum"
00:07:02

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

7
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Concerto "Duo Seraphim"
00:06:14

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Emiliano Gonzalez Toro, MainArtist, TenorSolo - Zachary Wilder, MainArtist, TenorSolo - Antonin Rondepierre, MainArtist, TenorSolo

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

8
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Psalmus "Nisi Dominus"
00:05:28

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Pierre Gallon, Organ, MainArtist - Adrien Mabire, MainArtist - Marouan Mankar-Bennis, Harpsichord, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

9
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Concerto "Audi, cœlum"
00:09:23

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Emiliano Gonzalez Toro, MainArtist, TenorSolo - Zachary Wilder, MainArtist, TenorSolo

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

DISC 2

1
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Psalmus "Lauda Jerusalem"
00:04:11

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

2
Sancta Maria, succurre miseris, SV 328
00:04:38

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Céline Scheen, MainArtist, SopranoSolo - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Lucile Richardot, MainArtist, AltoVocals - Perrine Devillers, MainArtist, SopranoSolo

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

3
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Sonata a 8 sopra Sancta Maria
00:06:28

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

4
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Hymnus "Ave maris stella"
00:09:28

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

5
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Magnificat anima mea dominum
00:00:53

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Céline Scheen, MainArtist, SopranoSolo - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

6
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Et exultavit
00:01:13

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Emiliano Gonzalez Toro, MainArtist, TenorSolo - Zachary Wilder, MainArtist, TenorSolo

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

7
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Quia respexit
00:02:18

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

8
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Quia fecit
00:01:14

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Nicolas Brooymans, MainArtist, BassVocals - Etienne Bazola, MainArtist, BassVocals - Pierre Gallon, Organ, MainArtist - Adrien Mabire, MainArtist - Marouan Mankar-Bennis, Harpsichord, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

9
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Et misericordia
00:03:10

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

10
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Fecit potentiam
00:00:51

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Lucile Richardot, MainArtist, AltoVocals

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

11
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Deposuit
00:02:30

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

12
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Esurientes
00:01:39

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

13
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Suscepit Israel
00:01:28

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Céline Scheen, MainArtist, SopranoSolo - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Perrine Devillers, MainArtist, SopranoSolo

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

14
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Sicut locutus est
00:01:05

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

15
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Gloria Patri
00:02:36

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Emiliano Gonzalez Toro, MainArtist, TenorSolo - Zachary Wilder, MainArtist, TenorSolo

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

16
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Sicut erat
00:02:22

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

17
Vespro della Beata Vergine, SV 206: Conclusio (versiculum et responsorium) "Domine, exaudi orationem meam"
00:03:32

Claudio Monteverdi, Composer - Pygmalion, MainArtist, MusicalEnsemble - Raphaël Pichon, Conductor, MainArtist - Renaud Brès, MainArtist, BassVocals

2023 harmonia mundi 2023 harmonia mundi

Album review

It is hard to know where to begin enumerating the beauties of this release by the Pygmalion ensemble and its director, Raphaël Pichon, who enumerates his thoughts on Monteverdi's Vespro della Beata Vergine in the interview-style booklet. There are many good recordings of this work, sometimes known as the Vespers of 1610. Right from the beginning, with the exultant blaze of unchanging harmony in the opening Invitatorium that announced, just as clearly as anything in the opera Orfeo, that the musical world had changed, the effect of this performance is exceptionally powerful, but it is not only the glittering tutti that impresses. Perhaps even more than Orfeo, the Vespers marshal all the musical resources Monteverdi had at his disposal. There are operatic arias in all but text, handled perfectly by well-chosen soloists who master the ornamentation idioms of the day. There are polychoral brass pieces that show Monteverdi's development of that style prior to his move to St. Mark's in Venice. There is old-school polyphony and straight monody. In Pichon's hands, all these styles are held in perfect balance. Harmonia Mundi's sound, from the Temple du Saint-Esprit in Paris, evokes the splendor of the ducal chapel in Mantua for which the Vespers were written. There is much more that could be said, but let it suffice to observe that even those who think they know the Vespers well will rethink that position after hearing this remarkable recording, which rightfully made classical best-seller charts in the late summer of 2023.

© James Manheim /TiVo

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