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Carlos Mena - vespro a voce sola
Claudio Monteverdi, Girolamo Frescobaldi, Giovanni Battista Bovicelli
Carlos Mena - vespro a voce sola
Genre: Classical


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All Artists: Claudio Monteverdi, Girolamo Frescobaldi, Giovanni Battista Bovicelli, Jean Tubery, La Fenice, Carlos Mena
Title: Carlos Mena - vespro a voce sola
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Astree
Release Date: 1/14/2003
Genre: Classical
Style: Opera & Classical Vocal
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 822186088791

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CD Reviews

A voice teacher and early music fan
George Peabody | Planet Earth | 04/22/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)


'The idea occurred to me of introducing a kind of music in which men might, as it were,speak in harmony....'Thus says Giulio Caccini in 1601 who encouraged the use of the solo voice accompanied by a harmony instrument as a means of expressing the "passion" of the text. Then around the same time Ludovico Grossi suggested using one or more voices underpinned by an accompaniment for basso continuo only, or continuo together with violins and wind instruments such as the trombone and

During the first half of the seventeenth century, especially in Venice, many collections of sacred music were published for one or two voices, accompanied by two treble instruments; in performance it was often possible to alternate one of the voices with an instrument. Such collections usually contained Motets to be sung during Mass or Vespers. Amongst the composers who deserve mention for their contributions are Alessandro Grandi, Ignazio Donati, Giavonni Riccio and Claudio Monteverdi.

The Office of Vespers was the finest showcase for the art and skill of the seventeenth-century composer of liturgical music, thanks to the rich variety of texts that it contained. The programme of this CD presents a reconstruction of a vesper service with solo voice for the feast of St. John the Baptist (June 24), with music chosen from the various collections mentioned above.

The 'Vespers' of St.John, the Baptist' begin with the invocation 'Domine ad juvandum'(Tarditi), followed by the Psalms 'Dixit Dominus'(Banchieri), 'Confitebor;'(Grandi),'Beatur vir' (Tarditi), 'Laudate pueri' (Merula),'Laudate Dominum'(Cozzolani). The relevant plainchant antiphons precede each psalm, and at the psalms's conclusion, sonatas for instrumental ensemble replace the repeat of the antiphon. The Vespers end with the 'Magnificat in falso bordone con passaggi' by Bovicelli.

The marvelous solo voice on this disc is Carlos Mena, whose voice has a wonderfully deep sound; clear and resonant,and to my ears very suitable for this type of music. In fact, it was common practise in this era to frequently use the countertenor-alto voice not only because female voices were excluded at this time, but also because the timbre matched the sound of many of the instruments used for the accompaniment.

The period instrument ensemble 'La Fenice' provides an outstanding and skillfully played accompaniment, with the individual instrumentalists providing some well-executed solo passages. All of this under the capable direction of Jean Tubery.

Recorded in 2002, the disc is beautifully packaged with information including the text translated from the Latin to French and English."
Rare Works
George Peabody | 04/21/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Alto Carlos Mena and La Fenice, a period-instrument ensemble directed by Jean Tubery, perform a "solo" vespers for the feast of St John the Baptist. This kind of music for one or two voices accompanied by two treble instruments was composed for use by smaller religious establishments on important feast days. Jean Tubery has reconstructed this vespers using psalm settings from different composers. "Carlos Mena is an ideal soloist for this repertory, whose singing matches the skill and sensitivity of La Fenice." (American Record Guide - Catherine Moore)The works on this recording:1. Domine ad adjuvandum me by Orazio Tarditi (1602-1677)
2. Ipse praeibit ante illum by Anonymous
3. Dixit Dominus by Adriano Banchieri (1568-1634)
4. Il primo libro delle canzoni: no 2, La Bernardina in C major by Girolamo Frescobaldi (1583-1643)
5. Joannes est nomen eius by Anonymous
6. Motetti con sinfonie, libro secondo: Confitebor tibi Domine by Alessandro Grandi (c1575-1630)7. Cantate Domino a 2 by Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643)
8. Ex utero senectutis by Anonymous
9. Beatus vir qui timet Dominum by Tarditi
10. Sonata sopra fuggi da lieti amanti by Biagio Marini (c1597-1665)
11. Iste puer magnus by Anonymous
12. Laudate pueri by Tarquinio Merula (1594-1665)
13. Sonata à 6 "La Buscha" by Giovanni Legrenzi (c1626-1690)
14. Inter natos mulierum - O Johannes doce nos by Anonymous
15. Laudate Dominum omnes gentes by Chiara M. Cozzolani (1602-c1677) 16. Ciaccona a 3 by Andrea Falconieri (c1585-1656)
17. Il primo libro di capricci fatti sopra diversi soggetti et arie: no 12, Ut, re, mi, fa, sol, la by Frescobaldi
18. Selva morale e spirituale: Iste confessor a 2 by Monteverdi
19. Il primo libro di capricci fatti sopra diversi soggetti et arie: no 5, La, sol, fa, mi, ut by Frescobaldi
20. Ingresso Zacharia by Anonymous
21. Regole, passaggi di musica, madrigali et motetti passeggiati: Magnificat anima mea by Giovanni Batt. Bovicelli (1550-1597)
22. Benedicamus Domino by Anonymous
23. Deo gratias by Anonymous"