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Der Engel sprach zu den Hirten, SWV395

based on Andrea Gabrieli's Angelus ad pastores
author of text
Luke 2: 10-11; Isaiah 9: 6

Voices and instruments are combined to splendid effect in Schütz’s adaptation of a Christmas motet by Andrea Gabrieli entitled Angelus ad pastores (‘The angel to the shepherds’). The intricately wrought seven-voice counterpoint and smoothly flowing imitative textures in Der Engel sprach zu den Hirten demonstrate Schütz’s mastery of the slightly old-fashioned polyphonic idiom associated with Giovanni Gabrieli, Orlande de Lassus, and other late-Renaissance composers. In retrofitting the elder Gabrieli’s music to German words, Schütz hoped to convince his compatriots that the vocal counterpoint they admired in their Italian models could be successfully emulated—a topic that was hotly debated in Germany in the 1640s.

from notes by Harry Haskell © 2019


Schütz: The Christmas story & other works
Studio Master: CDA68315Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available


Track 3 on CDA68315 [3'09]

Track-specific metadata for CDA68315 track 3

Recording date
27 January 2018
Recording venue
St Thomas's Episcopal Church, New Haven, Connecticut, USA
Recording producer
Andrew Walton
Recording engineer
Brian Losch
Hyperion usage
  1. Schütz: The Christmas story & other works (CDA68315)
    Disc 1 Track 3
    Release date: December 2019
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