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CHAN 10106
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CHAN 10106

Gubaidulina: Canticle of the Sun/ Homage à Marina Tsvetayeva

The Classical Shop
release date: October 2003

Originally recorded in 1999


Stefan Parkman

David Geringas


Danish National Symphony Choir


Danish Radio Concert Hall, Copenhagen


Chris Hazell

(Hommage à Marina Tsvetayeva)

Claus Due

(The Canticle of the Sun)


Jorn Jacobsen

Record Label




Total Time - 54:27
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(b. 1931)
Select Complete Single Disc for

The Canticle of the Sun by St Francis of Asissi (1997)*

  for Cello, Chamber Choir and Percussion  
  Dedicated to Mstislav Rostropovich  
  Marianne Lund soprano - Jane Bertlesen alto  
  Poul Embourg tenor - Rune Stensvold bass  
  Gert Sørensen - Tom Nybye percussion  
  Alice Nørregaard celesta  
1 'Altissimo onnipotente bon Signore' - 6:00
2 'Laudato si, mi SIgnore, per cun tucte le tue creature' - 1:27
3 'Laudato si, mi Signore, per sora luna e le stelle' - 1:06
4 'Laudato si, mi Signore, per frate vento' - 0:54
5 'Laudato si, mi Signore, per sora acqua' - 0:40
6 'Laudato si, mi Signore, per frate foco' - 0:42
7 'Laudato si, mi Signore' per sora nostra matre terra' - 4:25
8 'Altissimo, Altissimo' - 3:45
9 'Laudato si, mi Signore, per quelli ke perdonano' - 3:37
10 'Domine. Miserere. Amen' - 5:40
11 'Laudato si, mi Signore, per sora nostra morte corporale' - 5:01
12 'Laudate et benedicete mi Signore' 3:27

Hommage à Marina Tsvetayeva (1984)

  Marianne Lund soprano  
  Annette Simonsen alto  
  Kim GIles Nandfred tenor  
  Jørgen Ditlevsen bass  
13 I Below the Waves 3:40
14 II Horse 1:14
15 III All Magnificence 3:23
16 IV Interlude 1:38
17 V A Garden 7:48
Sofia Gubaidulina is one of the word’s most famous living composers and her music has a tremendous worldwide following.

This is currently the only available recording of Hommage à Marina Tsvetayeva, and there is only one other recording of The Canticle of the Sun.

Prize-winning Lithuanian cellist David Geringas studied with Mstislav Rostropovich. As a soloist he has performed with many international orchestras including the Berliner Philharmoniker, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, NHK Symphony Orchestra in Japan and London Philharmonic Orchestra. He is the dedicatee of several contemporary works, including a cello concerto by Gubaidulina.

Stefan Parkman has received great critical acclaim for his recordings with the Danish National Choir/DR.

"When in the first decade of the twentieth century, pioneering Russian creative artists turned to the sun for inspiration, they saw this theme as a symbol of liberation from turn-of-the-century decadence. In The Canticle of the Sun the power of the sun celebrates two liberating forces: specifically, the dedicatee, Mstislav Rostropovich, who shed light in the darkness of the later Soviet years (Gubaidulina has even spoken of the work embodying his ‘sunny personality’) and more generally, the spiritual sources which the composer has explored through her own musical journey within and beyond Soviet Russia. The Canticle of the Sun is a response to a text by St Francis of Assisi, in which he humbly glorifies the creator. Gubaidulina, aware that the music should not be ostentatious or complicated, suggests the mysteries of creation and humanity through solo cello and percussion, and places St Francis’s text in the restrained mouths of the choir as a kind of wondering response.

The second work on this disc is a setting of five poems by Marina Tsvetayeva for unaccompanied choir. Tsvetayeva was a creative artist from the first half of the twentieth century for whom Gubaidulina has claimed the greatest affinity. The full expressive power of her poetry comes to the fore in the last of the five movements,‘A Garden’. The tragic plea of the poem, ‘For this Hell /…/Grant me a garden/In my old age’, written in 1934 during Tsvetayeva’s Paris exile, stands in this context as a requiem for the poet, who hanged herself in the Soviet maelstrom in 1941.

The Danish National Radio Choir is most compelling, captured in superb sound.
Gramophone on CHAN 10008 (Nørgård)

…sung with bundles of dedicated precision.
BBC Music Magazine on CHAN 10008 (Nørgård)

…the performances of both works are outstandingly good. The Danish National Radio Chorus display phenomenal stamina and consistent tonal refinement…
Gramophone on CHAN 9126 (Schnittke)

'In musical terms Gubaidulina's mystic hymn to the creation is an out-of-body experience. Based on poems by St Francis of Assisi, it juxtaposes tingling percussion, Russian-style chorale and the searching voice of a cello, in a sound-world both ancient and modern, distant and intimate, ultra-refined and primeval.'
Financial Times

E Hynes

P Jones

(Canticle of the Sun) The music of Sofia Gubaidulina is curious and seductive at the same time. Her imaginative new combinations of timbre and instruments produce scores of profound originality. Sounds which seem to be electronically processed reveal themselves to be generated by the usual tools, but used in a very atypical way: the simple scratching of the surface of a drum, or a long, ecstatic note of a glass harmonica, are able to create a place of deepest meditation. I know several interpretations of this work and I find this the most successful and intense. It was not obvious to me if electronic effects were being used in this performance....and this increases the appeal. Antonio (Italia)
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