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Antiene pour les violons flutes et hautbois a 4 part, H.532
Apres Confitebor, Antienne D La Re Sol Bquarre, H.516
Offerte non encor executee, H.522
Offerte pour l'orgue et pour les violons flutes et hautbois, H.514
Ouverture pour l'Eglise, H.524
Ouverture pour le sacre d'un Evesque pour les violons flutes et hautbois, H.536
Ouverture pour le sacre d'un Evesque pour les violons flutes et hautbois, H.537
Pour plusieurs martyrs, motet a voix seule sans accompagnement, H.361
Pour un reposoir, ouverture dez que la procession paroist, H.523
Pre lecon de tenebres du Jeudy St pour une basse, H.121
Pre lecon de tenebres du Mercredy St pour une basse, H.120
Premiere lecon de tenebres du Vendredy Saint pour une basse, H.122
Symphonie en G Re Sol Bmol a 3 flutes ou 3 violons, H.529
Stephan MacLeod (bass)
Arte dei Suonatori, Alexis Kossenko
In France, during the reign of Louis XIV, the religious service known as Tenebrae was one of the most distinctive ceremonies in the liturgical year. Gradually, in the course of the office, the candles were extinguished, recalling the darkness that covered the earth when Jesus died on the cross.
Charpentier composed Tenebrae settings throughout his career, thirty-one lessons in all. The three presented here, written for the Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of Holy Week, are scored for a solo bass voice, accompanied by an orchestra composed of recorders, oboes, strings, bassoon and organ.
After the success of Vivaldi’s Concerti per il flauto traversier (Gramophone Editor’s Choice), flautist and conductor Alexis Kossenko, rising star of the younger generation of Baroque musicians, and the fine ensemble Arte Dei Suonatori present a new vision of this highly dramatic work by Marc-Antoine Charpentier.
“Here's ample proof, if it were needed, of Charpentier's rank as the finest Baroque church music composer of his generation.” Gramophone Magazine, November 2012
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“It almost goes without saying that a Hervé Niquet recording of Charpentier is going to be a thing of beauty. Whether it's in the long build-up to the top of the grand arch that's the opening Kyrie of the Messe de Monsieur de Mauroy, or the ardent twists and dissonances with which the first of the Leçons de Ténèbres announces itself, it only takes a few moments for Niquet's expert team of singers and instrumentalists to draw us into the achingly expressive world of 17th-century France.
Composed around 1691, this is the longest of his 11 Masses, and its many sections seem to move effortlessly from one to another, creating a constantly shifting range of subtle responses to text – some sweet, some stirring, some lilting and some weighty – while successfully maintaining the work's continuity.
Charpentier composed 31 incomplete sets of Leçons de Ténèbres, those intense settings of the Lamentations of Jeremiah that were so popular in Holy Week in France during the mid- Baroque period, and which produced some of its most ravishing musical moments. Scored for six male voices, strings, flutes and continuo, this set moves between straightforward declamation and music of increasing harmonic and dramatic urgency to present a striking evocation of the desolation of the ruined Jerusalem.
These performances are exquisitely judged, showing an unerring feel for the music's expressive ebb and flow. Two releases of thorough desirability.” Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010