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Ensemble Correspondances - Septem Verba & Membra Jesu Nostri

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Septem Verba & Membra Jesu Nostri

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé

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Formed in 2008, Sebastien Daucé's Ensemble Correspondances is now firmly established as a byword for quality and creativity in the performance of early music, with their acclaimed revivals of both the known and the long-neglected sacred and secular music of seventeenth century France, and with a rich discography to match. This latest recorded offering now sees them step out beyond France's borders for a foray into the Germanic repertoire, the headline pieces being a major work each from Dietrich Buxtehude and Heinrich Schütz.

Buxtehude's Membra Jesu Nostri (“The limbs of our Jesus”) opens the programme. An ambitious seven-part cycle of Passion cantatas over which an unnamed observer slowly raises their gaze from the feet of the scourged “Man of Sorrows” to his face, this was composed in 1680 for Buxtehude's friend Gustav Düben. Düben was music director to the Swedish court, and the work was probably commissioned for a court occasion, most likely premiered in the galleries of the German Church in Stockholm, which the court church at the time. Buxtahude's own official role was as organist at Lübeck's Marienkirche – a title which, in contrast to the kantor role which would have obliged him to be churning out new liturgical music every week, allowed him to compose when and how he wished, thus cutting no corners on quality. That's very apparent in this cycle, which book-ends poetic texts set as strophic arias with biblical words set for full instrumental and vocal forces, all couched within an imaginative tonal progression which opens with the feet in the darkest tonalities using flats, before gradually moving through to the brighter, sharp tonalities as the eyes move up towards the face (although it's eventually a C minor close, for architecture's sake).

Daucé's personal contribution to the mix has then been to prepare a new edition from the original performing parts which has further enrichened the colouristic and textural palette: adding a viola part for three of the cantatas; changing the allocation of stringed bass instruments so that the viol and violone aren't systematically playing with the continuo or violins; having two voices to a part for the chorus numbers, thus clearly distinguishing between soli and ripieni. Add Ensemble Correspondances's expressive, crisply articulated and suavely blended vocal performances, and the lucid delicacy of the instrumental support, and the results are very fine.

Schütz's major offering meanwhile is his late-career masterpiece, Die sieben Worte (“The Seven Words”), which inventively combines motet-like settings with expressive recitative. However the programme's joys aren't limited to its headline events. For instance there's also Schütz's Erbarm dich mein, o Herre Gott, a vocal concerto with densely contrapuntal instrumental textures which here grabs from the off with the beautiful puritan sobriety of the ensemble string tone, and the gently impassioned soprano entry. Then, for a real rarity, complementing mourning music from Buxtehude is the state music-redolent Lamentum by Swedish organist Ludert Dijkman (c1645-1717), written at the passing of two Swedish princes.

It'll be fascinating to see where Daucé turns next. © Charlotte Gardner/Qobuz

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Septem Verba & Membra Jesu Nostri

Ensemble Correspondances

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Membra Jesu Nostri, BuxWV 75 (Dieterich Buxtehude)

1
I. Ad pedes. Ecce super montes
00:07:38

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer - Arnulf of Leuven, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

2
II. Ad genua. Ad uber portabimini
00:07:44

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer - Arnulf of Leuven, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

3
III. Ad manus. Quid sunt plagae istae
00:09:19

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer - Arnulf of Leuven, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

4
IV. Ad latus. Surge amica mea
00:08:13

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer - Arnulf of Leuven, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

5
V. Ad pectus. Sicut modo geniti infantes
00:10:11

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer - Arnulf of Leuven, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

6
VI. Ad cor. Vulnerasti cor meum
00:08:40

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer - Arnulf of Leuven, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

7
VII. Ad faciem. Illustra faciem tuam
00:06:09

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer - Arnulf of Leuven, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

DISC 2

Fried- und freudenreiche Hinfahrt des alten großgläubigen Simeons, BuxWV 76 (Dieterich Buxtehude)

1
Klag-Lied : Muß der Tod denn auch entbinden, BuxWV 76/2
00:12:45

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

2
Mit Fried und Freud ich fahr dahin, BuxWV 76/1
00:04:39

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer - Martin Luther, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

Erbarm dich mein, o Herre Gott, SWV 447 (Heinrich Schütz)

3
Erbarm dich mein, o Herre Gott, SWV 447
00:04:42

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Heinrich Schütz, Composer - Erhard Hegenwald, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

Da Jesus an dem Kreuze stund, SWV 478 (Heinrich Schütz)

4
I. Introitus
00:02:10

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Heinrich Schütz, Composer - Johann Böschenstein, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

5
II. Symphonia
00:01:25

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Heinrich Schütz, Composer - Johann Böschenstein, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

6
III. Die sieben Worte
00:10:43

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Heinrich Schütz, Composer - Johann Böschenstein, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

7
IV. Symphonia
00:01:20

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Heinrich Schütz, Composer - Johann Böschenstein, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

8
V. Conclusio
00:01:52

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Heinrich Schütz, Composer - Johann Böschenstein, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

Lamentum eller En Sorge-Music (Lüdert Dijkman)

9
I. Aria
00:05:19

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Ludert Dijkman, Composer - Anonymous, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

10
II. Öde-Gudinnornas Swar
00:00:26

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Ludert Dijkman, Composer - Anonymous, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

11
III. Aria
00:01:36

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Ludert Dijkman, Composer - Anonymous, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

Herzlich lieb hab ich dich, o Herr, BuxWV 41 (Dieterich Buxtehude)

12
Herzlich lieb hab ich dich, o Herr, BuxWV 41
00:18:18

Ensemble Correspondances - Sébastien Daucé, Conductor - Dietrich Buxtehude, Composer - Martin Schalling, Lyricist

© 2021 harmonia mundi ℗ 2021 harmonia mundi

Album Description

Formed in 2008, Sebastien Daucé's Ensemble Correspondances is now firmly established as a byword for quality and creativity in the performance of early music, with their acclaimed revivals of both the known and the long-neglected sacred and secular music of seventeenth century France, and with a rich discography to match. This latest recorded offering now sees them step out beyond France's borders for a foray into the Germanic repertoire, the headline pieces being a major work each from Dietrich Buxtehude and Heinrich Schütz.

Buxtehude's Membra Jesu Nostri (“The limbs of our Jesus”) opens the programme. An ambitious seven-part cycle of Passion cantatas over which an unnamed observer slowly raises their gaze from the feet of the scourged “Man of Sorrows” to his face, this was composed in 1680 for Buxtehude's friend Gustav Düben. Düben was music director to the Swedish court, and the work was probably commissioned for a court occasion, most likely premiered in the galleries of the German Church in Stockholm, which the court church at the time. Buxtahude's own official role was as organist at Lübeck's Marienkirche – a title which, in contrast to the kantor role which would have obliged him to be churning out new liturgical music every week, allowed him to compose when and how he wished, thus cutting no corners on quality. That's very apparent in this cycle, which book-ends poetic texts set as strophic arias with biblical words set for full instrumental and vocal forces, all couched within an imaginative tonal progression which opens with the feet in the darkest tonalities using flats, before gradually moving through to the brighter, sharp tonalities as the eyes move up towards the face (although it's eventually a C minor close, for architecture's sake).

Daucé's personal contribution to the mix has then been to prepare a new edition from the original performing parts which has further enrichened the colouristic and textural palette: adding a viola part for three of the cantatas; changing the allocation of stringed bass instruments so that the viol and violone aren't systematically playing with the continuo or violins; having two voices to a part for the chorus numbers, thus clearly distinguishing between soli and ripieni. Add Ensemble Correspondances's expressive, crisply articulated and suavely blended vocal performances, and the lucid delicacy of the instrumental support, and the results are very fine.

Schütz's major offering meanwhile is his late-career masterpiece, Die sieben Worte (“The Seven Words”), which inventively combines motet-like settings with expressive recitative. However the programme's joys aren't limited to its headline events. For instance there's also Schütz's Erbarm dich mein, o Herre Gott, a vocal concerto with densely contrapuntal instrumental textures which here grabs from the off with the beautiful puritan sobriety of the ensemble string tone, and the gently impassioned soprano entry. Then, for a real rarity, complementing mourning music from Buxtehude is the state music-redolent Lamentum by Swedish organist Ludert Dijkman (c1645-1717), written at the passing of two Swedish princes.

It'll be fascinating to see where Daucé turns next. © Charlotte Gardner/Qobuz

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