I. Christmas 2005: Something Old...
Having said all of this, Vespro della Beata Vergine is equaled only by Handel's Messiah and Johann Sebastian Bach's Magnificat and Christmas Oratorio in the history of large scale musical works. At the time of its publication, the Vespers was the largest musical work of its kind at the time and as such should be considered in the same breath as these Seasonal masterpieces. There exist many fine recordings that include John Eliot Gardiner's historic and controversial reading on Archiv, Andrew Parrott's coupling with The Venetian Vespers on Virgin Classics, and Masaaki Suzuki's Bach Collegium Japan Orchestra on BIS (replete with the traditional Mass to accompany the Vespers).
Long story short, Alessandrini's Vespers have been breathlessly awaited, and in the true spirit of delayed gratification, the results were worth the wait. Soloists and orchestra alike are gilded into a perfect aural offering. Alessandrini, a foremost Monteverdi scholar, proves he has done his homework with the finest, most succinct and crisp reading of the work ever. This music is a perfect joy that illustrates where Monteverdi spun the thread of the Renaissance into the Gold tapestry that was to become the Baroque. Add Vespers to A Christmas Oratorio this season.
An elaborated version of this Vespers piece may be found at Kulture.
Tracks and Personnel
A Jazz Guitar Christmas
Tracks: Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow; White Christmas; Live Everyday Like Christmas; O Christmas Tree; I'll Be Home For Christmas; Winter Wonderland; Santa Claus Is Coming To Town; Toyland; Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas; We Three Kings; Christmas Song.
Personnel: Royce Campbell: guitar; Everett Greene: vocals; Tom Baldwin: bass instrument; Howard Curtis: drums.
O Magnum Mysterium
Tracks: Thomas Tallis: If Ye Love Me; A New Commandment; Tomas Luis de Victoria: O vos omnes; O magnum Mysterium; Morten Lauridsen: O magnum Mysterium; Francis Poulenc: O magnum Mysterium; Sergei Rachmaninoff: Vespers, Op. 37: Khvalite imya Gospodne: Praise the Name of the Lord; Franz Schubert: Der Entfernten; American Hymns and Spirituals: Wondrous Love; Amazing Grace; Sometimes I Feel Like a Moanin' Dove; Henryk Gorecki: Totus Tuus, Op. 60.
Personnel: Robert Shaw: conductor; Robert Shaw Festival Singers; Robert Shaw Chamber Singers; Christopher Cock: tenor.
Let's Share Christmas
Tracks: Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow; Let's Share Christmas; White Christmas; Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas; What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?; Sleigh Ride; Christmas Time Is Here; I'll Be Home For Christmas; Santa Claus Is Near; Christmas Song, The; Snowfall; Silent Night.
Personnel: John Pizzarelli Trio: John Pizzarelli: vocals, guitar; Ray Kennedy: piano; Martin Pizzarelli: bass. Additional personnel includes: Michel Legrand: arranger, conductor; Andy Fusco, Jeff Clayton: alto saxophone; Harry Allen: tenor saxophone; Bill Watrous: trombone; Bucky Pizzarelli: acoustic guitar, guitar; Jay Berliner: classical guitar; Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra.
Tracks: Winter Wonderland; 2. Jingle Bells; My Favorite Things; The Christmas Song; Las Mananitas; Sleigh Ride; The Bell That Couldn't Jingle; Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow; Jingle Bell Rock Jesu, Joy Of Man's Desiring.
Personnel: Herb Alpert: trumpet; others unidentified.
Concerto Italiano, Rinaldo Alessandrini - Monteverdi: Vespro della Beata Vergine, 1610
Tracks: Disc 1 Claudio Monteverdi, Vespro della beata Vergine (1610); Responsorium: Deus in adiutorium / Domine ad adiuvandum; Psalmus; Dixit Dominus; Concerto: Nigra sum; Psalmus 112: Laudate pueri; Concerto: Pulchra es; Psalmus 121: Laetatus sum; Concerto: Duo seraphim; Psalmus 126: Nisi Dominus; Concerto: Audi coelum; Disc 2 Psalmus 147: Lauda Jerusalem; Sonata sopra 'Sancta Maria'; Ave maris stella; Hymnus à; Magnificat [ I ] - a sette voci & sei strumenti; Et exultavit; Quia respexit; Quia fecit mihi magna; Et misericordia; Fecit potentiam; Deposuit potentes; Esurientes; Suscepit Israel; Sicut locutus est; Gloria Patri; Sicut erat in principio; Magnificat [ II ] - a 6 voci; Magnificat; Quia respexit; Quia fecit mihi magna; Et misericordia; Fecit potentiam; Deposuit potentes; Esurientes; Suscepit Israel; Sicut locutus; Sicut erat in principio.
Personnel: Roberta Invernizzi (Soprano); Monica Piccinini (Soprano); Anna Simboli (Soprano); Sara Mingardo (Alto); Francesco Ghelardini (Countertenor); Vincenzo Di Donato (Tenor); Gianluca Ferrarini (Tenor); Luca Dordolo (Tenor); Pietro Spagnoli (Baritone); Furio Zanasi (Baritone); Antonio [bass] Abete (Bass); Daniele Carnovich (Bass).