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Ján Levoslav Bella (1843-1936): Festive Mass; Deus Meus; Heil'ge Nacht; and more / Eva èuÜková, soprano; Lucie Hilscherová, alto; Juraj Hollý, tenor; TomáÜ èelc, bass; Petr Fiala, Czech Philharmonic C

Notes & Reviews:

Jan Levoslav Bella (1843-1936) was one of the most important Romantic Slovak composers, as well as a conductor and an organist. He studied theology in Banska Bystrica and at the Pazmaneum Jesuit University in Vienna. After his return to Banska Bystrica he was ordained as a priest in 1866 and he began teaching music at a seminary. From 1879 till 1881 he was the parish priest as well as municipal and ecclesiastic music director of Kremnica. At the age 38 he moved to Transsylvanian Sibiu (Hermannstadt), to be Kapellmeister and teacher. He converted to Protestantism, got married and brought musical culture to the German Protestant part of the town. In 1928 he moved back to Bratislava where he lived until his death in 1936. Bella is a highly estimable Romantic composer who contributed works to all musical genres. He wrote both religious and secular music: symphonic and chamber music, opera, and songs. He developed a style of his own, which laid the foundations of what was to become Slovak national music. This edition is a world premiere in all respects, and it has received the greatest care. Not only one of the best Czech symphony orchestras, but also one of the world's best choirs participated in its production. These forces are under the baton of renowned Dutch conductor David Porcelijn, who has a reputation as a musical pioneer. The recording was supervised by the Slovak recording engineer Jaroslav Stranavski.


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