Notes & Reviews:
The Cantata Sacra per la Nativita della Beatissima Vergine, Dialogo fra Fede, Speranza e Amor Divino (Sacred Cantata for the Nativity for the Blessed Virgin, Dialogue between Faith, Hope and Divine Love) was composed by Niccolo Jommelli in 1750. The score is housed in the library of the San Pietro a Majella Conservatory in Naples and it is scored for first and second violin, viola, cello, oboe, french horn, trumpet and basso continuo. It is a dialogue between Faith, Hope and Divine Love inspired by Biblical texts, as indicated by the printed libretto. The text is in the vernacular nad not latin, as was often the case to make the Holy Scripture more accessible to the general public. Included in the printed libretto are also the Biblical verses to which the text refers. This oratorio was composed during the five years in which Jommelli was in Rome as assistant to Pier Paolo Bencini, the Maestro di Cappella at St. Peter's in the Vatican, whose poor health required Jommelli's presence. Aided by this situation, as well as the protection and admiration of Cardinal Alessandro Albani, Jommelli was declared a "virtuoso" by the Pope himself, therefore exonerating him from being examined by the Congregation of St. Cecilia (today the Academy of St. Cecilia). Jommelli resigned from his position in Rome in May 1754, going to Stuttgart to become the Kapellmeister and court composer to the Duke of Wuttemberg.
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