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Arvo Part: 'Musica Selecta' - Für Alina, Mein Weg, Kanon Pokajanen, Silouans Song, Fratres, Alleluia-Tropus, Trisagion, Beatus Petronius, Magnificat, Stabat Mater & much more / Gidon Kremer, Alexei Lubimov, Susan Bickley et al.

Album Summary

>Pärt, Arvo : Es sang vor langen Jahren, for counter-tenor or alto with violin & viola
>Pärt, Arvo : Für Alina, for piano
>Pärt, Arvo : Mein Weg hat Gipfel und Wellentäler
>Pärt, Arvo : Kanon Pokajanen
>Pärt, Arvo : Silouans Song, for string orchestra
>Pärt, Arvo : Fratres, for violin & piano
>Pärt, Arvo : Alleluia Tropus, for chamber chorus & 8 cellos (or chorus & string orchestra)
>Pärt, Arvo : Trisagion
>Pärt, Arvo : Beatus Petronius, for double chorus & 2 organs (or orchestra)
>Pärt, Arvo : Ein Wallfahrtslied (Pilgrim's Song), for male chorus & string orchestra
>Pärt, Arvo : Most Holy Mother of God, for male voices
>Pärt, Arvo : Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten, for string orchestra & bell
>Pärt, Arvo : Magnificat
>Pärt, Arvo : Festina lente
>Pärt, Arvo : Lamentate
>Pärt, Arvo : Stabat Mater, for soprano, alto, tenor, violin, viola & cello
>Pärt, Arvo : Da pacem Domine
Performers Conductors Ensembles Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Composer Arvo Pärt and producer Manfred Eicher have maintained their creative partnership for more than 30 years. Eicher launched ECM New Series in 1984 as a platform for Pärt's music, bringing the Estonian composer to the world's attention with 'Tabula Rasa'. Since that epochal release, all first recordings of Pärt's major works have been made for ECM, with the composer's committed participation.

In this special double album, issued on Pärt's 80th birthday, Eicher revisits episodes from their shared musical quest, evoking fresh associations from juxtapositions of pieces in his dramaturgical sequence, as listeners are invited to hear the music anew. Compositions heard here include the legendary ECM premiere recordings of Es sang vor langen Jahren, Für Alina, Mein Weg, Kanon Pokajanen, Silouans Song, Fratres, Alleluia-Tropus, Trisagion, Beatus Petronius, Wallfahrtslied/Pilgrims' Song, Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten, Magnificat, Festina Lente, Lamentate, Stabat Mater, Da Pacem Domine, and a previously unreleased version of Most Holy Mother of God.

As for the performers, documentation of Pärt on ECM started with the recording of Fratres with Gidon Kremer and Keith Jarrett joining forces for the only time and has expanded to embrace many musicians who have, in turn, become closely associated with Pärt's music. These have included the Hilliard Ensemble, the British vocal group whose pure approach to early music was to prove eminently adaptable to Pärt's timeless oeuvre.

"My contact with ECM is beyond categorization," Arvo Pärt has said. "It is a natural supplement to my composing. Manfred Eicher's instrument is sound, acoustics, the sounding space which can be heard only by him. He hears in a special way and his records are a result of this hearing. What I call a piece of art made by Manfred is actually a rich and sensitive complex of hearing, thinking, feeling, taste and artistic skill, a whole philosophy. It is also something very lively and in continuous formation. Our work together making new records is always a celebration."

The Times, 25th September 2015
For this excellent two-CD compendium, the producer Manfred Eicher has selected pieces from the recordings he has made over the past 30 years. It's a perfect introduction to PSrt's work, ranging from global hits...to lesser-known and more recent pieces.

Notes & Reviews:

As the title and subtitle imply, this is a kind of greatest-hits album, with music selected by ECM label producer Manfred Eicher from the 12 albums on the label devoted to the music of Arvo Pärt. Pärt's music is so malleable that people tend to make their own versions of it rather than collect it, but if you wanted an anthology as a starter box, this would be the one to choose. Eicher has worked closely with Pärt since the 1980s, and he has indeed made a sensible "sequence" out of works that do not have a lot of contrast among them. Several of the early works that led to Pärt's mature minimalist style are here, as well as most of the better-known pieces: there's a gorgeous reading of probably the most-played one of all, "Fratres," by Gidon Kremer on violin and jazzman Keith Jarrett, another ECM stalwart, on piano. The performances are all by musicians with deep sympathy for Pärt's music, and the two CDs take on a hypnotic quality after a while. The most impressive aspect, though, is the engineering. In Eicher's hands, Pärt's music seems to hang on the edge of silence: it is, in the prescient words of Federico Mompou, music that has fallen silent. The fact that Eicher managed to remaster tracks dating back as far as 1984 into a whole that is not only sonically coherent, but virtually seamless is testimony to how good the engineering was in the first place, and also to the remarkable care taken throughout the whole ECM Pärt project. A remarkable collection. ~ James Manheim



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Works Details

>Pärt, Arvo : Es sang vor langen Jahren, for counter-tenor or alto with violin & viola
  • Performers: Gidon Kremer (Violin); Vladimir Mendelssohn (Viola)
  • Ensemble: The Hilliard Ensemble
  • Running Time: 6 min. 2 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1984

>Pärt, Arvo : Für Alina, for piano
  • Performer: Alexander Malter (Piano)
  • Ensemble: Tallinn Chamber Orchestra
  • Running Time: 10 min. 42 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1976

>Pärt, Arvo : Mein Weg hat Gipfel und Wellentäler
  • Conductor: Tönu Kaljuste
  • Ensemble: Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir
  • Running Time: 6 min. 22 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1999

>Pärt, Arvo : Kanon Pokajanen :: Ode VI
  • Conductor: Tönu Kaljuste
  • Ensemble: Vox Clamantis
  • Running Time: 8 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1994-1997

>Pärt, Arvo : Silouans Song, for string orchestra
  • Conductor: Tönu Kaljuste
  • Ensemble: Sinfonietta Riga
  • Running Time: 5 min. 38 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1991

>Pärt, Arvo : Fratres, for violin & piano
  • Performers: Keith Jarrett (Piano); Gidon Kremer (Violin)
  • Ensemble: Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra
  • Running Time: 11 min. 29 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1977-1980

>Pärt, Arvo : Alleluia Tropus, for chamber chorus & 8 cellos (or chorus & string orchestra)
  • Conductor: Tönu Kaljuste
  • Ensemble: Vox Clamantis
  • Running Time: 2 min. 45 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2008

>Pärt, Arvo : Trisagion
  • Conductor: Saulius Sondeckis
  • Ensemble: Swedish Radio Symphony
  • Running Time: 11 min. 50 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1992-1994

>Pärt, Arvo : Beatus Petronius, for double chorus & 2 organs (or orchestra)
  • Conductor: Tönu Kaljuste
  • Ensemble: Swedish Radio Choir
  • Running Time: 5 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1990-1996

>Pärt, Arvo : Ein Wallfahrtslied (Pilgrim's Song), for male chorus & string orchestra
  • Conductor: Tönu Kaljuste
  • Ensemble: Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra
  • Running Time: 8 min. 57 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1984-2001

>Pärt, Arvo : Most Holy Mother of God, for male voices
  • Performers: Rogers Covey-Crump (Tenor); Steven Harrold (Tenor); David James (Voice); Gordon Jones
  • Ensemble: The Hilliard Ensemble
  • Running Time: 5 min. sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2003

>Pärt, Arvo : Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten, for string orchestra & bell
  • Conductor: Dennis Davies
  • Running Time: 5 min. 7 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1977-1980

>Pärt, Arvo : Magnificat
  • Conductor: Tönu Kaljuste
  • Running Time: 6 min. 43 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 1989

>Pärt, Arvo : Festina lente
  • Conductor: Dennis Davies
  • Running Time: 5 min. 29 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1988-1990

>Pärt, Arvo : Lamentate :: Fragile
  • Performer: Alexei Lubimov (Piano)
  • Conductor: Andrey Boreyko
  • Running Time: 1 min. 5 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2002

>Pärt, Arvo : Lamentate :: Pregando
  • Performer: Alexei Lubimov (Piano)
  • Conductor: Andrey Boreyko
  • Running Time: 5 min. 58 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2002

>Pärt, Arvo : Lamentate :: Solitudine - stato d'animo
  • Performer: Alexei Lubimov (Piano)
  • Conductor: Andrey Boreyko
  • Running Time: 5 min. 31 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2002

>Pärt, Arvo : Stabat Mater, for soprano, alto, tenor, violin, viola & cello
  • Performers: Rogers Covey-Crump (Tenor); Lynne Dawson; Thomas Demenga (Cello); David James (Voice); Gidon Kremer (Violin); Vladimir Mendelssohn (Viola)
  • Running Time: 24 min. 4 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1985

>Pärt, Arvo : Da pacem Domine
  • Conductor: Tönu Kaljuste
  • Running Time: 4 min. 57 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2004