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Vir perfecte

St Andrews MS (Wolfenbüttel, Codex Helmstadensis 628); transcribed by Nicolas Bell
author of text

The St Andrews manuscript of c1240 provides a link between the music of the Parisian school of Pérotin and the development of measured polyphony in Britain, containing both music from Notre-Dame and works that were probably composed by British composers in direct imitation of the new styles developed in Paris. Two centuries after the Winchester Troper, composers now wrote long and free melismatic lines over each note of the chant, and had the notational resources to compose in rhythmic patterns. Vir perfecte is a Responsory for the Feast of St Andrew, and so may have been composed for use at the cathedral priory in St Andrews by a local composer. It juxtaposes three musical styles within the standard responsorial pattern, the chant alone, the free melismatic style over held notes of the chant, and the rhythmically defined sections in which the two parts move more closely together.

from notes by Geoffrey Webber © 2006


All the ends of the earth
SIGCD070Download only


Track 4 on SIGCD070 [7'17] Download only

Track-specific metadata for SIGCD070 track 4

Recording date
1 September 2004
Recording venue
Ely Cathedral, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Thomas Hewitt Jones
Recording engineer
Edward Bainton & Hugh Conway
Hyperion usage
  1. All the ends of the earth (SIGCD070)
    Disc 1 Track 4
    Release date: January 2006
    Download only
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