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Phil Muse
Audio Video Club of Atlanta, December 2013

Venanz Schubert, co-founder of the Palestrina Ensemble of Munich, directs that excellent group of 12 male and female voices in truly superlative accounts of 29 motets that comprise the biblical Song of Solomon, as set by the supreme master of Italian polyphony Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina…These accounts of Palestrina’s beautifully transparent settings range from merely exalted to simply other-worldly in their effect on the listener.

Palestrina showed in his beautifully transparent style that sound and sense, multiple voices and intelligibility, could co-exist.

Another aspect of Palestrina’s music that is conveyed to us in the present performances is its great sensual beauty. That is inherent in the subject, as the Song of Solomon may be appreciated (as it has long been in both Jewish and Catholic traditions) as both secular love lyric and a metaphor for God’s abiding love of His chosen people. © 2013 Audio Video Club of Atlanta Read complete review



David Denton
David's Review Corner, August 2013

Taking his name from his birthplace in Italy, Giovanni Palestrina was one of the first composers to bring together influences of Italian, French and Flemish music. Whether the Cantica Salomonis…was performed in its entirety during his lifetime is uncertain, for it is not far short of two hours. Consisting of an Antiphon and its related Motet, there is a series of twenty-nine such works, written in sacred contrition for the secular love-songs that had occupied his younger years. The present release is a patchwork of recording sessions that took place in 2005 and 2012…the performances come from the sizeable Palestrina Ensemble of Munich, and the much smaller Schola Cantorum…They…share the same conductor, Venanz Schubert, and though much separated in time, the recordings were made in the same venue and have been brought together without seems showing…the general tonal quality is pleasing and the vocal lines are clearly delineated. The two discs are completed with four Gregorian Chants and Motets. The recordings come from the highly reliable source of Bavarian Radio. © David’s Review Corner






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11:22:29 AM, 18 April 2014
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