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Cantatas (sacred) - Released November 1, 2010 | Da Capo

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Among his work on the exploration of 17th century German music, Paul Hillier has composed this magnificent monograph dedicated to Dietrich Buxtehude. His ensemble named Theatre of Voices, which he founded in 1990 in California, is composed of six singers (two sopranos, a countertenor, two tenors, and a bass) who come together into this theatrical and painful universe with delight. They are joined by the instruments of the TOV Band and Danish organist Bine Bryndorf; the young and flamboyant musician gives us a striking demonstration of the “stylus phantasticus” that is particular to the composer’s organ writing, contrasting, with an almost “rhapsodic” essence, incredibly inventive, like that which very much influenced a young Johann Sebastian Bach. An ideal and thrilling panorama of Dietrich Buxtehude’s religious vocal works. Not to be missed. © Qobuz
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Sacred Vocal Music - Released June 8, 2018 | Alpha

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In 1668, Dietrich Buxtehude, then thirty one years old, took up the very sought-after tenure of organist at the Marienkirche in Lübeck, then a Hanseatic metropolis of considerable relevance; the organist had at that time one of the most desirable social statuses. He soon caused a sensation with the church concerts he held outside of religious services and that happened every year, in the early evening, on the five Sundays preceding Christmas. During these “Abendmusiken” (vespertine music), as they were called, were sometimes performed great works falling withing the oratorio genre, but more often was performed a mix of instrumental pieces, church tunes, psalm arrangements and cantata-like works. From the 1700s, these series of concerts had become a major cultural event of the city. Released from the daily handling of religious music handled by the Marienkirche’s Cantor—as was often the case at the time in North Germany—, Buxtehude only composed works on his own initiative, which allowed him to give them a quality level noticeably higher than that of the Cantor, for example, forced to compose non-stop, from one Sunday to another. The cantatas recorded here demonstrate the high artistic ambitions of these vocal works: they often digress from stylistic and generic conventions of their time and answer the tasks imposed by the texts with bold musical solutions, daring and absolutely splendid. The sonatas from Buxtehude completing the vocal program of this disc are also characterized by their markedly experimental character. Olivier Fortin’s Masques Ensemble—recorder, strings, positive organ—and Lionel Meunier’s Vox Luminis join forces to offer us these gems from the turn of the North German 18th century, such gems that the young Bach didn’t hesitate, in 1705, to travel on foot from Arnstadt—a 100-league trip—to come listen to Buxtehude, his organ play and probably his famous Abendmusiken. © SM/Qobuz
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Sacred Oratorios - Released March 29, 2019 | Mirare

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Composed by Dietrich Buxtehude in 1680 for the church of Lübeck, where he had been working for ten years, Membra Jesu Nostri describes the scars of the Passion of Christ through a cycle of seven cantatas. The work owes its title to a Latin manuscript written by a relative of Saint Bernard. Typical of the pietism of 17th century Lutheran Germany, the piece is a descent into the darkness of suffering and an ode to the promise of consolation. Grounded in rhetoric, Buxtehude’s music influenced a generation of innovative musicians. It would later be an inspiration to Johann Sebastian Bach, who traveled to Lübeck specifically to meet Buxtehude. Membra Jesus Nostri was written for a five-voice ensemble. It requires a set of soloists with three lower voices and two upper parts, as well as a subtle instrumental accompaniment featuring two violins, five viols, and one basso continuo chose by the musicians. Some authors have seen the influence of the “Versailles Motet,” which Buxtehude knew well, in this setup. The influence of Italian music, especially Monteverdi, which he may have known through his interest in Schütz’s music, is also clear. The work is the testimony to Buxtehude’s incredibly expressive power and deserves to be considered as a masterpiece among other spiritual compositions such as Schütz’s Musikalische Exequien, Bach’s Passions and, on an instrumental level, Biber’s Sonates du Rosaire.According to Philippe Pierlot, who can be heard on the record, “Buxtehude is appealing directly to our senses and making us experience the suffering of Christ. We can feel the wounds, the blows, and the heart when it ceases to beat. Thanks to the genius of his music, the composer not only moves his listener to intense emotion, but also enlightens him, giving him access to the deep meaning of the text it sings” © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Chamber Music - Released February 3, 2017 | Mirare

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - Choc de Classica - Choc Classica de l'année
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Classical - Released July 7, 2017 | Alpha

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For this recording of music by Buxtehude, Jonathan Cohen, founder of the ensemble Arcangelo, is joined by a distinguished trio, including two regulars on the Alpha label, Sophie Gent and Thomas Dunford, alongside the gambist Jonathan Manson. Although Dietrich Buxtehude is famous above all for his organ music and cantatas, and for the long journey the young Bach undertook to meet him, his chamber music is virtually unknown. In the mid-1690s, at the height of his fame, Buxtehude published two collections in rapid succession, each comprising seven sonatas for violin, viola da gamba and basso continuo. It is the works of the first collection (1694) – designated Opus 1 in the print – that Arcangelo has recorded here. These sonatas are characterised by pronounced experimental features in both the scoring and the handling of the instruments. © Outhere Music
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Classical - Released April 14, 2003 | Alpha

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If you're going to write in it or name yourself after it, you've got to have guts to call what you do the Stylus Phantasticus. Dietrich Buxtehude wrote it in extravagantly brilliant music, music virtuosically composed with incredibly complicated but immediately self-evident forms setting in wildly expressive but intensely controlled emotions. The Swiss ensemble Stylus Phantasticus performs a program of Buxtehude's chamber music built on ostinato bass lines with a style that is indeed fantastic. All the players are virtuosos but their ensemble is nevertheless superbly balanced between freedom and responsibility. With the addition of soprano Maria Cristina Kiehr in the opening Cantata Herr, wenn ich nur dich habe and baritone Victor Torres in the closing Ciaccona Quemandmodum desiderat cervus, this is as varied and compelling as a program of ostinato bass lines can be, which is to say, multitudinously varied and relentlessly compelling. Alpha's recording is deep and round and clear and the packaging is beautiful. © TiVo
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Chamber Music - Released April 1, 2005 | Naxos

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Chamber Music - Released February 26, 2008 | Naxos

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Chamber Music - Released December 13, 2005 | Naxos

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Classical - Released January 1, 1995 | Channel Classics Records

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Chamber Music - Released September 30, 2008 | Naxos

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Chamber Music - Released March 25, 2008 | Naxos

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 9 de Répertoire
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Chamber Music - Released June 24, 2008 | Naxos

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Cantatas (sacred) - Released February 1, 2003 | Chandos

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Cantatas (sacred) - Released January 1, 2006 | Bayard Musique

Recorded by Marie-Ange Leurent and Eric Lebrun between 2005 and 2006, following 14 years of in-depth research, and issued by Bayard Musique in 2007 as separate discs, the complete organ works of Dietrich Buxtehude are presented in this six-CD slip-covered set. Arranged according to the liturgical seasons, Advent, Christmas, Lent, Passiontide, and Easter, with a disc devoted to music in honor of the Virgin Mary, the set gives a thorough exploration of the Baroque forms that Buxtehude employed, including preludes, fugues, toccatas, chorale preludes, and chaconnes, all highly influential on German composers, most especially Johann Sebastian Bach. Leurent and Lebrun used three organs for these recordings: the organ at St. Mary's Church, Helsingør, Denmark, the organ of St Paul's-Eppan, South Tyrol, Italy, and the organ of St. Cyprian in Périgord, France, and their registrations are documented in the accompanying booklet. This 2015 reissue isn't a deluxe package, but the quality is in the meticulous performances, and the sound is exceptionally clear and focused for church recordings. © TiVo
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Cantatas (sacred) - Released August 1, 2005 | Chandos

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Dietrich Buxtehude is a composer whose reputation is on the rise as performers look beyond the organ works that Bach took a 300-mile stroll to hear, and find a wealth of other riches. This disc, the second of a pair issued by its performers covering the similar repertory, focuses on a group of highly accomplished religious pieces for one or more voices and instruments, without chorus. Unlike Bach during most of his career, Buxtehude was an organist first and foremost; another Lübeck composer took care of the weekly vocal music for church. Though they are presented as a unitary set by the packaging and liner notes, the works on this album are of two sharply different types. Some are for small groups of voices, plus a small string group and continuo. It's easy to imagine these being sung on a Sunday in the living room of a well-established Lübeck merchant family; they have an intimate devotional quality that is familiar to us from Bach's music but that comes through especially nicely in this comparatively unusual setting. Other cantatas are for a solo voice, and these were not sung in anyone's home; they are fiery works for trained singers that Buxtehude must have had at his disposal. Some of the music is in German, the rest in Latin, and Buxtehude seems to have partially inspired Bach's ability to wring dramatic impact out of the sonic characteristics of a single German word. Try singing "nichts" repeatedly and rapidly as the performers here must do; they pull it off perfectly. Four top English soloists -- soprano Emma Kirkby, countertenor Michael Chance, tenor Charles Daniels, and bass Peter Harvey -- plus the Purcell Quartet handle these varied chores well in general. Those who want to hear Kirkby pushed to her limits can do so in the "Gloria Patri" movement of the cantata Dixit Dominus Domino meo, BuxWV 17, and the other soloists except for Harvey also get their athletic moments. Chance plays a bit loose with the pitch but is highly expressive. In the vocal-ensemble cantatas this English group does especially well in structures that point back to the middle seventeenth century -- ground basses, little strophic movements. Their precise style feels a little restrained in the moments where Buxtehude is closest to Bach, but some listeners may like it that way. In any event, this is an above-average exposition of some unfamiliar and quite important music. © TiVo
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Classical - Released November 30, 2013 | Challenge Classics

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Cantatas (sacred) - Released October 4, 2004 | Naxos

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Classical - Released June 20, 2006 | Naxos

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Classical - Released January 1, 2012 | Brilliant Classics

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