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Hyperion Records

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The Leipzig Thomaspforte (c1790) by an unknown artist
AKG London
Track(s) taken from CDH55373
Recording details: November 2000
St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead Garden Suburb, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Ben Turner
Engineered by Philip Hobbs
Release date: May 2001
Total duration: 10 minutes 53 seconds

'Charming music from one of Bach’s 17th-century predecessors as Kantor of the Thomaskirche, Leipzig. Strongly recommended' (Gramophone)

'The choral blending is fresh, vital and alert, with particularly alluring contributions from the soprano voices. The big brass arsenal is arresting and provides an effective foil for the more contemplative pieces. Thanks, King and Co' (BBC Music Magazine)

'This important recording is fine proof of Schelle’s imagination and invention … Robert King should be congratulated for an outstanding espousal of another of Bach’s forebears' (Early Music Review)

'I feel unusually evangelical about this new disc. Its riches are thrillingly overt: the music radiates a glowingly optimistic sense of spirituality comparable with the most outgoing of Bach’s later cantatas' (International Record Review)

'The man who is gifting this superlative disc to his friends is doing them the greatest favor imaginable. It contains an absolute treasure trove whose only common denominator is the high quality throughout every one of these nine works … King's fervent espousal of Schelle's marvelous music is apparent in every bar of this flawless disc' (Fanfare, USA)

'The King’s Consort are on top form throughout. Highly recommended' (The Organ)

'Anyone who has yet to investigate King's indispensable 'Bach's Contemporaries' should rectify the omission without a moment's further ado. Start with this treasure of a disc, then investigate the Kuhnau, Knüpfer and Zelenka. By that time you'll be ready to get down onto your knees and pray for further additions to the series' (Goldberg)

Lobe den Herrn, meine Seele
composer
16 September 1683 ?
author of text
Psalm 103: 1-5

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
This is an imposing twenty-five-part setting of the first five verses of Psalm 103, Lobe den Herrn, meine Seele (‘Praise the Lord, my soul’). The glory of the musical setting indicates a special occasion. As the work is already mentioned in a music inventory from 1688, it was probably composed in the first decade of Schelle’s tenure as Thomaskantor. One event during this time was the thanksgiving on 16 September 1683, for victory over the Turkish army, which had besieged the imperial capital of Vienna for nine weeks. The Saxon electoral prince Johann Georg III had been involved in the liberation and had ordered a national celebration for his return to Dresden. One Leipzig chronicle reports that during the celebratory service in St Thomas, after the solemn official sermon, ‘a beautiful music’ was played—maybe this setting of the Psalm by Schelle. The alternating tutti and solo sections display a similarity with the Venetian Psalm settings of Johann Rosenmüller. Towards the end of the piece the first verse is repeated textually and musically, thereby creating a formal rounding off before the work closes with a concise Alleluia-fugue.

from notes by Peter Wollny © 2001
English: Viola Scheffel

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