Compact Discs

Amorosa Fenice

Amorosa Fenice (Giulio San Pietro de’ Negri)
(Amorous Phoenix)

Released in Autumn 2014 on the agOgique label: Amorosa Fenice, a CD dedicated to the rediscovery of the work of Giulio San Pietro de' Negri.

Of all the fascinating but nearly forgotten figures who populated the world of Italian monody in the first half of the 17th century, Giulio San Pietro de' Negri is probably one of the most interesting. He published at least 11 volumes of profane and sacred vocal music between 1605 and 1620. This corpus includes a good number of astonishingly original pieces, even in the context of the rather experimental standards of the era.

Certainly, Giulio San Pietro de' Negri is one of those – like composer and theorbo player Bellerofonte Castaldi – who must have appreciated the benevolent shadow of Claudio Monteverdi, of whose music de' Negri's is reminiscent. De' Negri was capricious, curious, open to novelty, and above all free to wander in his singular way in the New World of sound discovered by the Venetian master.

The journey of our composer parallels that of his more known contemporaries such as the patrician Sigimondo d'India from Palermo and the noble Claudio Saracini of Siena. These musicians from aristocratic families, not restrained by either professional status or conventional rules of composition, invented some profoundly original ways of writing music. It is this voyage far from beaten paths that Faenza's recording invites us to follow.

Performers:

  • Marco Horvat: direction, vocals, theorbo, Baroque guitar, lira da gamba
  • Olga Pitarch: soprano
  • Brigitte Vinson: mezzo-soprano
  • Jeffrey Thompson: tenor
  • Emmanuel Vistorky: bass
  • Magali Imbert: recorders, tambourine
  • Pierre Hamon: recorders
  • Christine Plubeau: treble and bass viols
  • Charles-Édouard Fantin: lute, theorbo, Baroque guitar
  • Matthieu Boutineau: harpsichord, clavicytherium, lautenwerk

« Very quickly one is struck by the inventive richness of this largely unknown composer, which makes him the equal of the greatest amid his contemporaries. Most of the selected airs are taken from the two known volumes of Grazie ed affetti (1613-14). In all this music there is something vernal, lively, and bounding with energy. Even when these airs do not exude joy, the vibrancy is still present. The diversity in the association of voices and instruments assures a constant variety from one track to another of this disc; each new listening is a source of delight. »
Laurent Bury, Music-opera.com, October 6, 2014

L'Astrée

L'Astrée

L'Astrée, the pastoral novel by Honoré d'Urfé (1567-1625) was one of the greatest successes in 17th-century literature and its influence on contemporary mentality was immense. The music innervates this series of tales where love stories continually cross and interlock: its numerous characters sing, accompanied by harps, recorders or musettes on many occasions, to seduce, to console each other or to express their feelings in a new way. In order to give back to the work its dimension of sound, the group Faenza proposes a musical promenade to illustrate the Romanesque situations, particularly numerous, where the music intervenes. Four singers, who on occasion play the roles of story-tellers, and three instrumentalists make the music of l'Astrée resonate anew, the manuscripts having been rediscovered by musicologist Thomas Leconte, thanks to his patient work in cross-referencing.

Performers:

  • Olga PITARCH : vocals
  • Jean-Michel FUMAS : vocals
  • Marc MAUILLON : vocals
  • Marco HORVAT : vocals, lute, Baroque guitar
  • Pascale BOQUET : lute, Renaissance guitar
  • Matthieu BOUTINEAU : harpsichord
  • François LAZAREVITCH : musette, recorders
  • Angélique MAUILLON : triple harp
  • Recitation by Marco Horvat

Recorded in November 2007 at the former castle of the Urfé family (la Bâtie d'Urfé).

Astrée by elektrorl on Grooveshark
La Semaine Mystique

La Semaine Mystique
(The Mystical Week)

An oration in musical form, the spiritual parody incarnates the vacillations of 17th-century man:  song, as much a source of elevation as of sensuality, can swing the sinner's soul - a wobbly tightrope walker - to salvation or to damnation. The Capuchin brother Phlilppe d'Angoumois recommended meditating on a religious theme every day of the week in order to imbue the flesh with incorporeal mysteries. Thus an imaginary spiritual itinerary is sketched for the soul in love with salvation.

Performers:

  • Recitation by Marco Horvat

Recorded in December, 2005 in the chapel of the Notre-Dame de Bon Secours hospital, Paris.

Semaine mystique by elektrorl on Grooveshark
Il Giardino di Giulio Caccini

Il Giardino di Giulio Caccini
(The Little Garden of Giulio Caccini)

At the heart of the Camera Fiorentina, Caccini participated in the creation of the  recitar cantando, which was instrumental in the birth of the opera. Sometimes mischievous, sometimes melancholy, Marco Horvat accompanies himself on the theorbo and guitar.

Performers:

  • Marco HORVAT : vocals, theorbo, Baroque guitar, lirone
  • Olga PITARCH : vocals
  • Eric BELLOCQ : theorbo, Renaissance guitar 
  • Bruno CAILLAT : percussion 
  • Angélique MAUILLON : triple harp
  • Imke DAVID : lirone 

Recorded in February, 2003 in the chapel of the hospital, Notre-Dame de Bon Secours in Paris.

Il Giardino by elektrorl on Grooveshark

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