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Zelenka: Sepolcri - Music from 18th Century Prague

Audio Samples

>Zelenka, Jan D. : Immisit Dominus pestilentiam, for soloists, chorus, instruments & continuo, ZWV 58
>Zelenka, Jan D. : Attendite et videte, for soloists, chorus, instruments & continuo, ZWV 59
>Zelenka, Jan D. : Deus Dux fortissime, for soloists, double chorus, 2 violins, viola & continuo, ZWV 60

Album Summary

>Zelenka, Jan D. : Immisit Dominus pestilentiam, for soloists, chorus, instruments & continuo, ZWV 58
>Zelenka, Jan D. : Attendite et videte, for soloists, chorus, instruments & continuo, ZWV 59
>Zelenka, Jan D. : Deus Dux fortissime, for soloists, double chorus, 2 violins, viola & continuo, ZWV 60
Performers Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Jan Dismas Zelenka, the most distinctive figure of Czech Baroque music, no longer requires any introduction. His Prague works, however, have yet to be paid much attention. And unjustly so. The three sepolcri (cantatas intended for performance on Good Friday at the Holy Sepulchre) represent the earliest music of Zelenka's that has been preserved, yet they are already truly singular pieces encompassing all the traits of their creator's remarkable compositional style. Zelenka created the pieces for Prague's Klementinum, the oldest Jesuit College in Bohemia, and in a unique manner they serve to document the copious music performances that took place at the Saint Salvator Church, one of the most significant places on the "music map" of Baroque Prague. In 1709, Zelenka conducted at this church the performance of the first sepolcro. Three centuries later, the cantatas were recorded for the very first time (at the church located at the opposite end of the Charles Bridge) by Collegium Marianum, one of the finest Czech and European Baroque ensembles, together with four outstanding soloists. Another installment in the successful Music from Eighteenth-Century Prague series, and another chapter of Jan Dismas Zelenka's remarkable oeuvre presented to the listener.

"They are the earliest pieces by Zelenka to have survived...The long, achingly expressive melodic lines that are so characteristic of Zelenka's later instrumental writing can be heard in the vocal writing here, along with his fondness for constructing elaborate fugues, and for coming up with totally unexpected dramatic twists. They are fascinating rediscoveries." -The Guardian

Gramophone Magazine
Though the more consistent balance of later works is yet to be achieved, his many admirers will surely be delighted at the opportunity to acquaint themselves with this younger but clearly recognisable and lovable version of their hero. Collecgium Marianum introduce us to him in performances that are skilful, stylish and attractive to the ear...A beautiful, warming Baroque discovery.

The Telegraph
The tone, unsurprisingly, is restrained, yet there is an underlying sprightliness and restless invention, well captured by the Prague forces.

American Record Guide, July / August 2012
The Collegium Marianum was founded in 1997. Its specialty is music of the 17th and 18th Centuries. Since 1999 the ensemble has been under the direction of Jana Semeradova, a specialist in the baroque transverse flute. She plays the flute parts here. This recording is part of Supraphon's series "Music from 18th-Century Prague". Admirers of Zelenka's music will certainly want to acquire this recording, but it can be recommended to more general listeners too.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Church of Virgin Mary under the Chain, Prague (05/05/2011-05/07/2011).



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Works Details

>Zelenka, Jan D. : Immisit Dominus pestilentiam, for soloists, chorus, instruments & continuo, ZWV 58
  • Performer: Hana Blazikov (Gothic Harp)
  • Conductor: Jana Semeradova
  • Ensemble: Collegium Marianum
  • Notes: Church of Virgin Mary under the Chain, Prague (05/05/2011-05/07/2011)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 46 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1709

>Zelenka, Jan D. : Attendite et videte, for soloists, chorus, instruments & continuo, ZWV 59
  • Ensemble: Collegium Marianum
  • Notes: Church of Virgin Mary under the Chain, Prague (05/05/2011-05/07/2011)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 53 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1712

>Zelenka, Jan D. : Deus Dux fortissime, for soloists, double chorus, 2 violins, viola & continuo, ZWV 60
  • Performer: Tomas Kral
  • Ensemble: Collegium Marianum
  • Notes: Church of Virgin Mary under the Chain, Prague (05/05/2011-05/07/2011)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 1 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1716