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ClassicsOnline Home » AVE MARIA - Gregorian Chant
There's something about Mary
Through the years, the Blessed Virgin has been a favorite subject in Christian art and music, with many composers inspired by the Magnificat and Stabat Mater verses. The current disc focuses on shorter Marian works from just two overlapping chronological periods--chant and the Renaissance. The words "Gregorian chant" on the cover are an understatement, since no fewer than five styles of plainsong are presented in a program alternating between the austerity of a single melodic line and the rich counterpoint of multiple vocal parts.
In addition, the number of those parts varies from the customary four to as high as eight. The reverberant recording allows the sopranos (and occasionally the tenors) to soar over the group texture, but often reduces the basses to just a hint of sound rather than an equal part. Also, it's unlikely that women and men ever chanted together in that period. Those quibbles aside, it's fine singing, and one would only be inclined to complain that the disc is rather short, at less than an hour. A brief essay is included, and all the texts.more....
By Steve Holtje
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AVE MARIA - Gregorian Chant