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Sacred Oratorios - Released April 12, 2010 | Da Capo

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Hi-Res Audio
Ars Nova Copenhagen and Paul Hillier here present the third recording in their critically acclaimed series devoted to the narrative works (Historia) of Heinrich Schütz (1585-1672). The Danish vocal ensemble thus celebrate Denmark's proud connection with this German masterwho was appointed Kapellmeister to King Christian IV and worked at the Danish court for two periods over the course of eleven years. The cover illustrations show reliefs in beaten metal by Karl Schmidt-Rottluff (1884-1976), a member of the Die Brücke group founded in 1905 in Dresden - a city with which Schütz himself was closely associated. © DaCapo
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Sacred Vocal Music - Released May 12, 2011 | Ricercar

Hi-Res Booklets Distinctions Diapason d'or - Gramophone Record of the Year - Hi-Res Audio
Exequien in German are funeral observances, and Heinrich Schütz's Musikalische Exequien, SWV 279, were performed in February 1636 for the funeral of Heinrich Posthumus von Reuss, a prince and diplomat who was a personal friend of the composer. Reuss planned his own funeral down to the last detail, commissioning music from Schütz, providing him with German texts roughly analogous to the Latin requiem mass, and designing his own sarcophagus, which is reproduced in full color in the booklet. Prince Heinrich Reuss XIII even gets an album credit for making it available for a photograph. Various good recordings of this work are available, from Philippe Herreweghe (captures the emotional intensity in the periodic harmonic clashes) to John Eliot Gardiner (very Bachian). Forces deployed range from one voice per part (Weser-Renaissance) to medium-sized groups (the Sixteen) to full choirs or children's choirs. This reading by Lionel Meunier and the multinational group Vox Luminis is also well worth considering. You might think of it as the authentic performance among authentic performances. Meunier deploys two voices per part and draws his soloists from this group in the work's shifting antiphonal structures; there is manuscript evidence that this is the ensemble size Schütz had in mind. The continuo is realized by a small organ and a bass viol, solutions apparently suggested by Schütz himself. The Musikalische Exequien are introduced by other funeral motets and chorales by Schütz and others, setting the stage for the impact of the funeral rite itself and echoing the order of an actual Lutheran service. And the singers get the quality of memorial warmth in the music, which lives up to the comparison in the booklet notes of the Musikalische Exequien with the Brahms German Requiem, Op. 45. There are versions with more spectacularly sharp singing, but few others that seem to fit together as convincingly as this. The performance is strengthened by the ideal acoustics of a small church in the Loire region. Strongly recommended for any Schütz collection. © TiVo
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Classical - Released October 2, 2020 | Raumklang

Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
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Sacred Vocal Music - Released February 12, 2021 | Arcana

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
Johann Hermann Schein, Sebastian Knüpfer, Johann Schelle, Andreas Gleich, Johann Georg Ebeling, Johannes Kessel, Johann Rosenmüller – all names that are unlikely to be familiar to you, unless you happen to be especially knowledgeable on the subject of early German Baroque composers. Yet all enjoyed esteemed reputations in their day, and three of them – Schein, Knüpfer and Schelle – were actually predecessors of Johann Sebastian Bach in the lofty role of Leipzig ThomasKantor. Then even less familiar to most listeners will be the music these men composed for funeral services, because when each service's music was created specifically for that one event, and reflected the tastes and choices of the deceased person it honoured, it didn't make sense to publish it for wider performance. Consequently, the first thing to point about about this programme of seventeenth century German funeral music from Basel-based vocal ensemble Voces Suaves under Johannes Strobl, is the feast of unknown repertoire presented around its central performance of Schütz's Musikalische Exequien; because while Schütz was so proud of this structurally and texturally ambitious 1636 work for the funeral of Henry II, Count of Reuss-Gera, that he published it at his own expense that very year, the surrounding motets from his above-mentioned contemporaries have been transcribed specifically for this recording, direct from the original sources, with much of it recorded for the very first time. The performances themselves have more than done this rare repertoire justice, too: beautifully lucid textures both in the choral singing and the sensitive accompanying from violone, theorbo and organ; bright, clear-toned vocal tones, with a particularly exquisitely light and pure upper-register soprano sound on show in motets such as Gleich's Selig sind die Toten; crisp articulation and sombre, heartfelt expression of the texts overall. Add the fact that the back catalogue isn't bursting with previous recordings even of the Schütz, and this album is very welcome indeed. © Charlotte Gardner/Qobuz
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Classical - Released April 10, 2012 | Brilliant Classics

Booklet Distinctions 4 étoiles Classica
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Music by vocal ensembles - Released June 3, 2008 | harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released August 15, 2007 | harmonia mundi

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Masses, Passions, Requiems - Released November 6, 2007 | harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released October 1, 2016 | Passacaille

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or de l'année - Diapason d'or - Exceptional Sound Recording
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Classical - Released November 17, 2009 | Da Capo

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Hi-Res Audio
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Choral Music (Choirs) - Released July 5, 2019 | Carus

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
A brilliant conclusion to the first Heinrich Schütz complete recording. With the "Psalmen & Friedensmusiken" (Psalms & Music for Peace), Hans-Christoph Rademann and the Dresdner Kammerchor bring this groundbreaking project to a magnificent close. The recording features mostly unknown, but particularly sumptuous and mostly multi-choral works, which Schütz wrote between 1618 and 1648 for important political occasions or thanksgiving celebrations. Groups of soloists and choristers create a colorful sound experience in interplay with strings, trombones, cornetts and viols. A truly worthy conclusion to this award-winning series. © Carus
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Choirs (sacred) - Released July 31, 2007 | harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released November 30, 1997 | BIS

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Classical - Released October 6, 2017 | Carus

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Classical - Released March 17, 2017 | Carus

Hi-Res Booklet
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Classical - Released September 16, 1996 | Naxos

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Vocal Music (Secular and Sacred) - Released August 27, 2013 | Carus

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Choral Music (Choirs) - Released May 3, 2011 | Carus

Booklet
Heinrich Schütz's Italian madrigals might be thought of as his dissertation work, composed in 1611 and presented to his patron, the Landgrave of Hesse, who had sent him to Italy on a scholarship for study with Giovanni Gabrieli. They had an effect far beyond their immediate purpose, serving to introduce a newly expressive Italian spirit into German music and thus kicking off a trend that would endure for two centuries. (He also snared an extra year's scholarship money for his trouble.) Schütz's madrigals did not follow either the radical harmonic experiments of Gesualdo or the new declamatory experiments of Monteverdi; instead, they would have fit right into the mainstream of madrigal composition around 1600, with high-quality Italian texts dealing mainly with the pleasures and pains of love. There are flashes of dissonance and an assured handling of harmony in general, with complex but coherent harmonic layouts. Perhaps the madrigals' most distinctive characteristic is their vivid word-painting. This reading by the Dresden Chamber Choir under Hans-Christoph Rademann might be classified as skilled but old-school. The choir has 18 predominantly young voices, with ten female and eight male adult singers; their control of pitch in a completely a cappella setting is impressive, and these are sensitive, expressive performances, especially for people whose native language is not Italian. It's also true that the trend in the performance of vocal music of this type has been toward smaller ensembles, especially in the case of madrigals, which were likely meant for part-singing from the start. For those interested in the Dresden Chamber Choir, which has gained quite a reputation for its performances of music of the early Baroque, this may not be the best place to start, but for those who enjoy choral performances of madrigals (for example, the numerous British university choir madrigal performances) this will be an enjoyable outing. © TiVo
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Classical - Released September 2, 2008 | K617

Booklet
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Choirs (sacred) - Released July 31, 2007 | harmonia mundi