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Laudarium - Songs of popular devotion by anonymous composers from 14th-century Italy / La Reverdie

Ensemble

Notes & Reviews:

The Lauda, a musical-poetic genre first developed by Saint Francis of Assisi, is historically the oldest and remains one of the most remarkable expressions of Italian popular musical culture from the Middle Ages to our day. In this double CD set La Reverdie presents a rich and varied anthology of Italian monophonic Laude from the two principal sources of this repertoire: the manuscripts of Cortona (ca. 1270) and Florence (ca. 1320), centered on the main themes common to both: the cult of the Virgin Mary and the devotion of the Saints. Along with recorded performances of many pieces from the Florence manuscript never before recorded, the two CD set includes a presentation booklet with detailed introductory essays illustrating the methods of musicological research involved in the reconstruction of this repertoire, as well as its continuing social, historical, cultural and religious significance, upon which La Reverdie has founded its unique interpretative approach.

American Record Guide, July/August 2015
La Reverdie weaves a fabric of voices and instruments that is colorful, and I like the textile metaphor because it describes whole cloth that has strength and also can withstand a certain amount of "give" in all directions. In 'Con La Madre', for example, the florid female vocal solo line is supported by the other female voices, and the cornetto fashions a golden thread through the texture. The woven image also matches the solid wholesomeness of communal devotion, well made and strong.



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