Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Music in Ärentuna

From Ensembles
Camerata Englund and Pian' e Forte defied the extreme cold that we are experiencing right now (-20 C) and celebrated the Epiphany (Trettondagen) in the church of Ärentuna, some kms north of Uppsala. Unfortunately, almost no one else did. The souls seated in the church could be counted on one hand. In any case, we performed our best for the few that were present. It also served as a rehearsal for the Vespers, coming up in March. With some luck, I'll update this post with a recording of these fine players.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Audi Coelum

An extract from the Vespers by Monteverdi, which we are rehearsing with the choir for presentation in March.
This is a motet for two tenors, where the second tenor echoes the first. It is a remarkable portrayal of a man's dialogue with God. As you can hear on the recording, the echo is sung from a distant place in the church. It also repeats the last syllables of the first tenor, but with a new meaning. "Gaudio" (joy) is echoed as "Audio" (I hear), for instance. Below is the text in Latin and English.
My preferred recording on Spotify (Cantus Cölln, Konrad Junghänel)
Listen and follow in the text - A great experience guaranteed!

Audi Coelum, verba mea, plena desiderio et perfusa gaudio. Hear, O heaven, my words full of longing and suffused with joy.
Audio. I hear.
Dic, quaeso, mihi :
Quae est ista, quae consurgens ut aurora rutilat ut benedicam ?
I beseech you,
tell me who is she that rises up, bright as the dawn, and I shall bless her.
Dicam. I shall tell you.
Dic nam ista pulchra ut luna, electa ut sol, replet laetitia terras, coelos, maria ?

Tell, for she is beautiful as the moon, exquisite as the sun which fills with gladness the earth, heavens and seas.

Maria! Mary!
Maria Virgo illa dulcis, praedicata de propheta Ezechiel
porta Orientalis ?
That sweet virgin Mary, foretold by the prophet Ezechiel, that eastern gate,
Talis. The same.
Illa sacra et felix porta pet quam mors fuit expulsa,
introduxit autem vita ?
that sacred and joyful portal through which death was expelled and life renewed;
Ita! Thus!
Quae semper tutum est medium inter homines et Deum, pro culpis remedium.
who is always a trusted mediator between God and man for the forgiveness of sins.
Medium. A mediator.
Omnes hanc ergo sequamur, qua cum gratia mereamur vitam aeternam consequamur.
Let us all therefore follow her, through whom we may with grace deserve to attain life everlasting.
Sequamur. Let us follow.
Praestet nobis Deus, Pater hoc et Filius, et Mater cuius nomen invocamus dulce miseris solamen.
May God the Father,
and the Son, and the mother whose name we invoke, grant sweet solace to the unhappy.
Amen. Amen.
Benedicta es, virgo Maria, in saeculorum saecula. Blessed art thou, virgin Mary, for ever and ever.