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Grazyna Biernot, Jakub Fišer, Karel Košárek, Lukáš Vasilek, Martinů Voices - Martinů: Madrigals

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Martinů: Madrigals

Grazyna Biernot, Jakub Fišer, Karel Košárek, Lukáš Vasilek, Martinů Voices

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These works are not well known outside of Czech-speaking lands, but the lyrical choral song, madrigalian or otherwise, fascinated Bohuslav Martinu for some years: the works here date from between 1934 and 1959, shortly before his death. Three of the sets are designated as madrigals, a form that would have been in the air during the composer's years in France. Perfectly balancing external influences and Czech melodic content, they are absolutely characteristic of the composer. The slow pieces contain some of Martinu's most attractive melodies (sample the third track, from the 1959 set of Madrigals for soprano solo and mixed chorus a cappella). The non-madrigal works on the album incline further in the direction of Czech folk music, even though two are sacred in content. The forces of the Three Sacred Songs are the highly unusual female chorus and violin, and these have an especially haunting effect. The Martinu Voices are a powerful, virtuoso choir of professional singers, and their sound in itself is often impressive, but the madrigalian and French aspect of the music would sometimes seem to call for a lighter touch. This is nonetheless an attractive recording of some almost unknown music, and a must for Martinu lovers.

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Martinů: Madrigals

Grazyna Biernot, Jakub Fišer, Karel Košárek, Lukáš Vasilek, Martinů Voices

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1
Madrigals, H. 380: No. 1, On the Other Bank of the Danube 00:01:57

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

2
Madrigals, H. 380: No. 2, Lo, a Grove 00:02:38

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

3
Madrigals, H. 380: No. 3, Nothing Lasts in This World 00:03:19

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Grazyna Biernot, Artist, Singer - Grazyna Biernot, Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

4
Madrigals, H. 380: No. 4, So You Think 00:02:15

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

5
Primrose, H. 348: No. 1, The New Hat. Poco allegro 00:00:56

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Karel Kosarek, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Jakub Fišer, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, Jakub Fišer, Karel Košárek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

6
Primrose, H. 348: No. 2, In Front of Our Yard. Allegro 00:01:12

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Karel Kosarek, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Jakub Fišer, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, Jakub Fišer, Karel Košárek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

7
Primrose, H. 348: No. 3, The Complaint. Poco andante 00:01:55

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Karel Kosarek, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, Karel Košárek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

8
Primrose, H. 348: No. 4, A Nice Piece of Wood. Poco allegro 00:01:33

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Jakub Fišer, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, Jakub Fišer, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

9
Primrose, H. 348: No. 5, Noon. Allegro 00:00:54

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Karel Kosarek, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Jakub Fišer, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, Jakub Fišer, Karel Košárek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

10
Czech Madrigals, H. 278: No. 1, Lo, Off We Go. Moderato 00:02:00

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

11
Czech Madrigals, H. 278: No. 2, Let's Go. Allegro moderato 00:01:35

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

12
Czech Madrigals, H. 278: No. 3, Let Me Know, Lord. Andante moderato 00:03:29

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

13
Czech Madrigals, H. 278: No. 4, Hey! We've Got Goods to Sell. Allegro 00:02:14

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

14
Czech Madrigals, H. 278: No. 5, My Head Is Aching 00:02:23

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

15
Czech Madrigals, H. 278: No. 6, We Love Each Other. Allegretto 00:01:52

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

16
Czech Madrigals, H. 278: No. 7, How Do I Feel. Lento 00:02:14

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

17
Czech Madrigals, H. 278: No. 8, Once More. Allegro 00:01:46

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

18
Three Sacred Songs, H. 339: No. 1, The Nativity. Poco allegro 00:02:20

Anonymous, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Jakub Fišer, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, Jakub Fišer, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

19
Three Sacred Songs, H. 339: No. 2, The Ascension of the Lord. Allegro moderato 00:04:24

Anonymous, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Jakub Fišer, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, Jakub Fišer, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

20
Three Sacred Songs, H. 339: No. 3, The Path to Paradise. Allegro moderato 00:02:51

Anonymous, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Jakub Fišer, Artist, Soloist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, Jakub Fišer, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

21
Four Songs About the Virgin Mary, H. 339a: No. 1, The Annunciation. Allegro moderato 00:01:31

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

22
Four Songs About the Virgin Mary, H. 339a: No. 2, The Dream. Moderato, poco andante 00:02:03

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

23
Four Songs About the Virgin Mary, H. 339a: No. 3, The Virgin Mary's Breakfest 00:03:03

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

24
Four Songs About the Virgin Mary, H. 339a: No. 4, A Picture of the Virgin Mary 00:03:42

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

25
Five Czech Madrigals, H. 321: No. 1, The Message Delivered by the Dove. Allegro 00:01:18

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

26
Five Czech Madrigals, H. 321: No. 2, My Aching Head. Poco andante 00:01:07

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

27
Five Czech Madrigals, H. 321: No. 3, Geese Floating on Water. Allegro 00:00:59

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

28
Five Czech Madrigals, H. 321: No. 4, Riding to See My Love. Allegretto 00:01:05

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

29
Five Czech Madrigals, H. 321: No. 5, Spells and Calumnies. Allegro 00:00:46

Traditional, Author - Bohuslav MARTINU, Composer - Lukas Vasilek, Conductor, Artist - Martinů Voices, Orchestra, Artist - Martinů Voices, Lukáš Vasilek, MainArtist

Supraphon A.s. Supraphon A.s.

Album Description

These works are not well known outside of Czech-speaking lands, but the lyrical choral song, madrigalian or otherwise, fascinated Bohuslav Martinu for some years: the works here date from between 1934 and 1959, shortly before his death. Three of the sets are designated as madrigals, a form that would have been in the air during the composer's years in France. Perfectly balancing external influences and Czech melodic content, they are absolutely characteristic of the composer. The slow pieces contain some of Martinu's most attractive melodies (sample the third track, from the 1959 set of Madrigals for soprano solo and mixed chorus a cappella). The non-madrigal works on the album incline further in the direction of Czech folk music, even though two are sacred in content. The forces of the Three Sacred Songs are the highly unusual female chorus and violin, and these have an especially haunting effect. The Martinu Voices are a powerful, virtuoso choir of professional singers, and their sound in itself is often impressive, but the madrigalian and French aspect of the music would sometimes seem to call for a lighter touch. This is nonetheless an attractive recording of some almost unknown music, and a must for Martinu lovers.

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