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Romantic Program

Felix Mendelssohn (1801-1847)

Franz Liszt (1811-1886)

The mottoes “Ave Maris Stella” and “Anima Christi, sanctifica me” were composed respectively in 1865 and 1874. Placing the two compositions side by side allows detecting the evolution of Liszt’s language, particularly concerning the harmony. This is the evidence of the Liszt’s habit of experimenting his researches on short compositions.

In “Ave Maris Stella”, the harmonic conduct follows the usual praxis and also from a formal point of view the Opera’s division in two almost identical parts detects the use of a simple model. The “Anima Christi” has a freer development, with pieces in the tuned form and some parts with everything playing at the same time. The harmony presents enharmonic variations and insisted chromatic procedures, which Wagner remembered while composing his “Parsifal”.

Of this magnificent repertoire the Polyphonic Group “Claudio Monteverdi” published a compact disc

Joseph Gabriel Rheinberger (1839-1901)

Working in the second half of the 1800’s, Rheinberger fuses in his sacred music a deep lyrical feeling and a control of the counterpoint’s form which did not conform him to the standards of the cecilian reform that was diffusing in Europe at that time. The “Ave Maria” is part of a mess, probably substituting the gradual.

In this composition, the author is reviving the warmth of the Marian prayer in a simple way, but demonstrating great security and composing capability.

Anton Bruckner (1824-1896)

The “Fest – Cantata” was commissioned to Bruckner by bishop Rudigier to inaugurate the new cathedral in Linz (1st May 1862). The cantata, originally written for male choir and wind instruments, was then transcripted for voices and organ by Karl Etti and is still performed in this way.

The five small parts of the Cantata, varying both in organic and in texts, are deeply related to the “Preiset denn Herrn” which opens and closes the Opera.

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