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Adriaen Willaert

Vespro della Beata Vergine

I n the 1960s the Beatles made Liverpool the musical centre of the universe; in the 16th century, it was Adrian Willaert who made Venice the musical centre of Europe!

The Flemish composer Adriaen Willaert, like many of his compatriots, played an important role in the creation of the Italian musical language of the Renaissance. He composed both sacred and secular works for every musical genre. He is, however, best known historically for the double-choir technique that he develeoped whilst maestro di cappella of St. Mark's Basilica in Venice. His was a unique talent, capable of expressing both the words themselves and the emotion of the text so movingly!

When Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643) published his famous Marian Vespers in Venice in 1610, there was no doubt that he had created a monument in sound, one that would astonish the listener with its ingenious combination of styles and sumptuous orchestration at the very least. Its roots, however, go back deep into the 16th century; Monteverdi was actually continuing a tradition that had been launched by none other
than Adriaen Willaert (ca. 1490-1562): he as well wrote settings in double choir for a "Vespro della Madonna". This tradition is the inspiration for this recording, in which Capilla Flamenca has recreated a Venetian Vespers dedicated to the Virgin Mary.

The performance of polychoral settings of the Vespers psalms in Venice in Willaert's time was reserved for the most important moments of the Venetian liturgical calendar. The Basilica of St. Mark was still the Doge's private chapel, who naturally made use of it on important feast days to add to the glory of his position.

The works recorded here are all to be found in the volume Di Adriano e di Iachet i salmi appartenenti alli Vesperi that was published by the printer Antonio Gardano in 1550 and are either salmi con le sue risposte (an alteration between 2 groups in 4 parts) or salmi spezzate (containing a short overlap between the verses, with one group singing its concluding cadence as the other group begins the following verse).

In contrast to Monteverdi's setting of the Marian Vespers, an extensive collection of instruments was not used during the middle of the 16th century. The organ was certainly employed, but did not accompany the choirs, who most probably sang a cappella. This tradition is respected in this recording.
Caeciliaprijs 2012Klara 2012, best recordingCHOC de l'ANNEE 2012 de ClassicaDIAPASON 'ORCHOC de CLASSICA
1. Deus in adiutorium meum intende | Gregorian | 1'02
2. Toccata del ottavo tono | Annibale Padovano | 3'48
3. Benedicta es - Per illud ave à 7 | Adriaen Willaert | 7'05
4. Ricercar I à 4 | Adriaen Willaert | 4'35
5. Dixit Dominus (ps. 109) à 8 | Jaquet de Mantua - Adriaen Willaert | 6'31
6. Laudate pueri (ps. 112) à 8 | Adriaen Willaert | 3'54
7. Ricercar primo à 3 | Adriaen Willaert | 5'18
8. Laetatus sum (ps. 121) à 4 | Jaquet de Mantua - Adriaen Willaert | 6'50
9. Nisi Dominus (ps. 126) à 4 | Jaquet de Mantua - Adriaen Willaert | 5'22
10. Ricercar settimo à 3 | Adriaen Willaert | 4'12
11. Lauda Jerusalem (ps. 147) à 8 | Adriaen Willaert | 4'45
12. Ave maris stella à 6 | Grégorien - Adriaen Willaert | 7'42
13. Ricercar X à 4 | Adriaen Willaert | 5'15
14. Magnificat (aliis temporis) à 4 | Gregorian - Adriaen Willaert | 8'27
15. Benedicamus Domino in laude à 4 | Adriaen Willaert - Gregorian | 1'34
16. Toccata del terzo e quarto tono | (Annibale Padovano) | 2'59
Marnix De Cat, Rob Cuppens: countertenors
Tore Denys, Jan Caals, Govaart Haché, Laurens Wyns: tenors
Lieven Termont: baritone
Dirk Snellings: bass

Joris Verdin: organ

Concept and Artistic Direction: Dirk Snellings

Willaert - Laudate Pueri Dominum (Psalm 112)

Willaert - Laudate Pueri Dominum (Psalm 112)

CHOC de l'année 2012
'une véritable quête spirituelle'

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Diapason d'Or!
'Ce magnifique ensemble de voix masculines a choisi le pur a capella, sans aucune doublure instrumentale ou d'orgue.'
Denis Morrier
Source : Diapason -

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CHOC de Classica
'Les virtuoses de la Capilla Flamenca font valoir tout au long de l'album une ductilité de chant et un bonheur sonore sans pareils. Une vraie fete.' Roger Tellart
Source : Classica -

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Knack Focus
'... gepassioneerd ...'
Rudy Tambuyser, Knack Focus augustus 2012
Source : Knack Focus

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'De variatie zit hem in de densiteit van de composities. De akoestische ruimte is niet die van San Marco, ze is eerder beperkt , wat de klaarheid dan weer ten goede komt. Daarin komen de afwisselende koren goed tot hun recht.'
Lucas Huybrechts
Source : -

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Nominatie Gouden Label
'Het is wachten tot 23 juni 2013 om te weten of het Gouden Label wel degelijk wordt toegekend, maar het staat buiten kijf dat dit een uitermate geslaagde opname is.' Ludwig Van Mechelen
Source : Klassiek Centraal -