Hyperion Records

Iste confessor Domini sacratus, SV279
Himnus comune confessorum; setting II; from Selva morale e spirituale (1640/1641)
author of text
? in honour of St Martin of Tours

'Monteverdi: Sacred vocal music' (CDH55345)
Monteverdi: Sacred vocal music
MP3 £4.99FLAC £4.99ALAC £4.99Buy by post £5.50 CDH55345  Helios (Hyperion's budget label)  
Track 3 on CDH55345 [2'40] Helios (Hyperion's budget label)

Iste confessor Domini sacratus, SV279
A hymn in flowing triple time, also found set to Sanctorum meritis and Deus tuorum militum in the Selva morale. The same gently modulating harmonies serve for both string ritornelli and verses, and could be thought of as a ground bass if the setting were any longer. At least one composer after Monteverdi did think of it as a ground bass: the Veronese Antonio Bertali who worked in Vienna borrowed it and part of Monteverdi’s tune for a set of variations in a sonata for two violins, bassoon and continuo. A curious feature of Monteverdi’s piece is the high pitch of the parts, particularly of the continuo. It is possible that the music should be heard a fourth lower sung by a bass, but we decided to record it at written pitch using a tenor as the Renaissance transposition conventions were becoming obsolete by the end of Monteverdi’s career, and the music has an attractive squeaky sonority when performed at the high pitch, which may be a deliberate effect. We used a bass viol to play the continuo instead of the cello as several contemporary Italian sources suggest its use for high-pitched bass lines.

from notes by Peter Holman © 1981

Track-specific metadata
Details for CDH55345 track 3
Recording date
3 February 1981
Recording venue
St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead Garden Suburb, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Martin Compton
Recording engineer
Tony Faulkner
Hyperion usage
  1. Monteverdi: Sacred vocal music (CDA66021)
    Disc 1 Track 3
    Release date: April 1985
    Deletion date: November 2007
    Superseded by CDH55345
  2. Monteverdi: Sacred vocal music (CDH55345)
    Disc 1 Track 3
    Release date: March 2010
    Helios (Hyperion's budget label)
   English   Français   Deutsch