Ars Nova Copenhagen and Paul Hillier here present the fourth recording in a series devoted to the narrative works (Historia) of Heinrich Schütz (1585-1672). The Danish vocal ensemble thus celebrate Denmark’s proud connection with this German master who was appointed Kapellmeister to King Christian IV and worked at the Danish court for two periods over the course of eleven years. The cover illustrations show reliefs in beaten metal by Karl Schmidt-Rott luff (1884-1976), a member of the Die Brücke group founded in 1905 in Dresden – a city with which Schütz himself was closely associated.
Performance **** Recording ****
"...Well recorded, in a warm acoustic, this is a worthy completion of Hillier’s collection of all six of Schüt’s narrative works."
George Pratt - BBC Music Magazine - July 2011
Raúl Mallavibarrena - Ritmo - 1 May 2011
"...At 12 strong, Ars Nova Copenhagen is arguably a little large; an ensemble of one or two singers per part would have been more likely, though the extra voices here do add variety to the minor solo roles. The brief flanking choruses and the pithy utterances of the crowd which punctuate the narrative offer the only harmonic interest in the work. There are some wonderfully painted, perfectly tuned dissonances in the opening four-part chorus, and a wistful, keening sorrow to the concluding chorus. Best of all are the powerful turbas in which Schütz used a variety of means (like simple imitative part writing) to suggest a multitude - they are delivered here with dramatic sensitivity and spot-on timing. This is music which needs to be listened to in one uninterrupted sitting, texts and translations in hand, and the modern world held at bay. A hair-shirt Easter treat."
Simon Heighes - International Record Review - 12 April 2011
Steen Chr. Steensen - Klassisk - 1 May 2011