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Track(s) taken from CDA67519

Laetatus sum I

Messa quattro voci e salmi (1650)
author of text
Psalm 121 (122)

King's Consort Choir, The King's Consort, Robert King (conductor), Carolyn Sampson (soprano), Rebecca Outram (soprano), Charles Daniels (tenor), James Gilchrist (tenor), Peter Harvey (bass), Robert Evans (bass)
Recording details: February 2004
St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead Garden Suburb, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Ben Turner
Engineered by Jonathan Stokes
Release date: November 2005
Total duration: 6 minutes 37 seconds
Laetatus sum I  [6'37]

Other recordings available for download

King's Consort Choir, The King's Consort, Robert King (conductor), Carolyn Sampson (soprano), Rebecca Outram (soprano), Charles Daniels (tenor), James Gilchrist (tenor), Peter Harvey (bass), Robert Evans (bass)


'Robert King never rushes the music but cannily treads the fine line between dizzying excitement and authoritative splendour. Even if you already admire seminal recordings of Monteverdi sacred music by the likes of Andrew Parrott, Konrad Junghänel and Rinaldo Alessandrini, there are plenty of less familiar gems included that make this series essential' (Gramophone)

'This series of recordings is proving to be the definitive account of the neglected side of Monteverdi’s genius, and one that’s unlikely to be surpassed in range and quality for many years' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Robert King's essential exploration of Monteverdi offers yet more evidence of the master's genius. Here the familiar sits with lesser known settings of sacred settings, all works of staggering beauty. King and the soloists capture the essence of this music, with outstanding contributions from Carolyn Sampson, Charles Daniels and James Gilchrist' (The Independent)

'This magnificent series goes from strength to strength, each fresh instalment reaching even more stratospheric standards of excellence than its predecessor' (The Daily Telegraph)

'The opening Laetatus sum is irresistible—typical in its bounce and clarity of every track in the fourth volume of the King's Consort's survey of sacred Monteverdi … Monteverdi collectors shouldn't hesitate' (The Times)

'All played and sung with style' (The Sunday Times)

'I'm inclined to think this superbly engineered disc the most successful issue yet in a splendid series. Fervently recommended' (Goldberg)

'The King's Consort has grown in confidence in this music as the recordings progress; each of these pieces is a joy. The soloists are uniformly excellent, with James Gilchrist comining into his own … These are Rolls-Royce recordings, drawing on the very best of British musicians and recording experience. Even the ripieno choir is peopled with some of the country's most experienced singers' (Early Music)
It is a sobering thought that this gloriously exuberant setting for Vespers of Psalm 121 (Psalm 122 in the Book of Common Prayer) would probably have been lost for ever had it not been for the intervention of Monteverdi’s publisher, Alessandro Vincenti, who included it in the Messa a quattro voci e salmi of 1650. Most of the setting is based on a four-note ostinato – the first four notes of the ‘Ruggiero’ bass with which Monteverdi began his setting of the same text in the Vespers of 1610. Where the 1610 setting is one of Monteverdi’s most complex and intellectually challenging pieces, however, here he seems to take a simple delight in overcoming the restrictions of the ostinato, introducing variety not only through melodic invention but by introducing a number of obbligato instruments – violins, trombones and bassoon. There are echoes of the well known Beatus vir setting in the opening violin melodies, and of the semiquaver roulades of the great seven-part Gloria. There is humour too, perhaps, in the seemingly endless sequences with which Monteverdi sets ‘ascenderunt’ in verse 4 and ‘Amen’ towards the end of the setting. The ostinato is presented in triple time in verses 8 and 9 and abandoned for the beginning of the ‘Gloria Patri’, but returns in its original metre to round off the setting.

from notes by John Whenham © 2005

Et dire que cette mise en musique du psaume 121 (122), destinée aux vêpres, aurait certainement été perdue à jamais si l’éditeur de Monteverdi, Alessandro Vincenti, ne l’avait incluse dans la Messa a quattro voci e salmi de 1650. Glorieusement exubérante, elle repose pour l’essentiel sur un ostinato de quatre notes – les quatre premières notes du «ruggiero» avec lequel Monteverdi ouvrit le Laetatus sum de ses Vêpres de 1610. Si cette dernière mouture est l’une des pièces monteverdiennes les plus complexes, les plus exaltantes, aussi, sur le plan intellectuel, ici, le compositeur semble juste prendre plaisir à triompher des restrictions de l’ostinato, l’invention mélodique, ajoutée à plusieurs instruments obligés (violons, trombones, basson), lui permettant d’introduire de la diversité. Les mélodies violonistiques initiales présentent des échos du célèbre Beatus vir et des roulades en doubles croches du grand Gloria à sept parties. Peut-être faut-il aussi voir de l’humour dans les séquences apparemment sans fin qui mettent en musique «ascenderunt» (verset 4) et «Amen», vers la fin de la pièce. L’ostinato, présenté en mesure ternaire aux versets 8 et 9, est abandonné au début du «Gloria Patri», mais revient clore l’œuvre, dans son mètre d’origine.

extrait des notes rédigées par John Whenham © 2005
Français: Hypérion

Es ist ein ernüchternder Gedanke, dass diese herrliche, jubelnde Vertonung des Psalms 121 (122 in der Lutherbibel) für die Vesper wahrscheinlich vollkommen verschwunden wäre, wenn Monteverdis Verleger, Alessandro Vincenti, nicht eingegriffen und das Werk mit der Messa a quattro voci e salmi von 1650 herausgeben hätte. Ein großer Teil der Komposition fußt auf einem Vierton-Ostinato – die ersten vier Noten des „Ruggiero“-Basses, mit dem Monteverdi seine Vertonung desselben Texts in der Marienvesper von 1610 begann. Während die Vertonung von 1610 zu den komplexesten und intellektuell anspruchsvollsten Stücken Monteverdis zählt, scheint er hier einfach nur Freude daran zu finden, die Einschränkungen des Ostinatos zu überwinden, indem er nicht nur durch melodischen Einfallsreichtum für Abwechslung sorgt, sondern auch durch das Einsetzen mehrerer obligater Instrumente – Violinen, Posaunen und Fagott. In den Melodien der Geigen sind zu Beginn Anklänge an die berühmte Vertonung des Beatus vir zu hören und zudem wird auf die Sechzehntelrouladen aus dem großartigen siebenstimmigen Gloria angespielt. Außerdem wird ein gewisser Sinn für Humor deutlich, wenn Monteverdi das Wort „ascenderunt“ in Vers 4 und das „Amen“ gegen Ende des Stücks mit scheinbar endlosen Sequenzen vertont. In Vers 8 und 9 erscheint das Ostinato im Dreiertakt, wird dann am Anfang des „Gloria Patri“ zurückgelassen, jedoch später im Originalrhythmus wieder aufgegriffen, um das Werk zu einem gerundeten Ende zu bringen.

aus dem Begleittext von John Whenham © 2005
Deutsch: Viola Scheffel

Other albums featuring this work

Monteverdi: The Sacred Music, Vol. 4
This album is not yet available for downloadSACDA67519Super-Audio CD — Deleted
The King's Consort Collection
KING7Super-budget price sampler — Deleted