Schütz: Musicalische Exequien Vox Luminis, Lionel Meunier

Album info



Label: Ricercar

Genre: Classical

Subgenre: Choral

Album including Album cover


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  • Heinrich Schütz (1585 - 1672):
  • 1Herr, nun lässest du deinen Diener in Friede Fahen, SWV 43204:01
  • 2Ich bin die Auferstehung und das Leben, SWV 46403:37
  • 3Herr, nun lässest du deinen Diener in Friede fahen, SWV 43303:18
  • 4Das ist je gewißlich wahr, SWV 27704:44
  • Samuel Scheidt (1587 - 1654):
  • 5Wir glauben all an einen Gott03:15
  • Martin Luther (1483 - 1546):
  • 6Mit Fried und Freud fahr ich dahin03:29
  • Heinrich Schütz (1585 - 1672):
  • 7Musicalische Exequien, SWV 279: Concert in Form einer teutschen Begräbnis-Missa: Nacket bin ich03:59
  • 8Musicalische Exequien, SWV 279: Concert in Form einer teutschen Begräbnis-Missa: Also hat Gott die Welt geliebt20:21
  • 9Herr, wenn ich nur dich habe, SWV 28003:28
  • 10Herr, nun lässest du deinen Diener in Friede fahren, SWV 28104:57
  • Total Runtime55:09

Info for Schütz: Musicalische Exequien

With the Thirty Years' War raging around them, Lutherans considered death to be the true fulfilment of their earthly life. Prince Heinrich von Reuss organised all the details of his funeral in advance, from the music that would be sung - to be composed and then performed by Heinrich Schütz during the funeral ceremony - to the coffin itself. Our programme includes not only the renowned Musicalische Exequien but also other funeral motets by Schütz, one of which was composed on the death of his friend Johann Hermann Schein.

After the success of their CD of works by Samuel Scheidt (RIC 301), Vox Luminis now take up the challenge of one of Schütz's greatest sacred works. It should be noted that the CD cover art is a photograph of a section of the coffin that Reuss himself had ordered; Prince Heinrich XIII Reuss has most generously allowed its use by Ricercar for this recording. The coffin is made of solid copper; its richly decorated exterior is studded with cartouches that contain liturgical texts selected by the deceased prince.

"The 12 voices of Belgian ensemble Vox Luminis put their faith in tonal focus and sweetly balanced textures. Though one might expect from that a certain coolness, their singing produces music-making of intimate, aching beauty. The recorded sound, gently resonant, is perfect. This great work is preceded by other funeral motets by Schütz, including two more settings of the Nunc dimittis and a heartfelt musician s memorial to the composer Schein. In Vox Luminis s hands even the four verses of Luther s unison chorale Mit Fried und Freud tugs at the heart. A marvellous disc." (Gramophone)

"This is an exceptional new Schütz recording...the most completely satisfying version that I have ever heard of this extraordinary work...Meunier's pacing feels utterly natural, and both the inventiveness and meditative repose of Schütz's music comes across marvellously. In short, if you are looking for a recording of this beautiful and daring work, this new Ricercar disc is the one to choose. September 2011." (International Record Review)

"It has received some fine recordings, and this new one is quite outstanding 12 light-voiced singers alternating solo, ensemble,and choral forces,a beautifully balanced ensemble of individual yet blended voices.Photos of the magnificent coffin of the noble lord in whose honour this music was written are in the booklet;Lionel Meunier's thoughtful direction makes a serene and rewarding disc." (The Observer)

Vox Luminis
Lionel Meunier, conductor

Vox Luminis
founded in 2004 in Namur, Belgium, is an ensemble specialising in the performance of 16th – 18th century vocal music.

The ensemble has been praised for its seamless blend of high quality individual voices, exquisite tuning and clarity of sound. Critics have also commented on the ensemble’s enthusiasm in sharing its passion for early music with an audience. The majority of the group met at one of the most significant centers for early music in Europe: the Royal Conservatory in The Hague.

Vox Luminis has performed in festivals and venues in Belgium (Nuits de Septembre de Liège, festival de Stavelot, Juillet Musical de Saint-Hubert, Automne Musical de Spa, MA festival Bruges, festival van Vlanderen Gent, Laus Polifoniae Antwerpen, festival des midi-Minimes, Eté Musical de Roisin, Société Philharmonique de Namur…); France (festival d’Ambronay, festival de Saintes, Rencontres Musicales de Vézelay, festival de Saint-Michel en Thiérarche, Midsummer festival d’Hardelot, festival Contrepoint 62, Festival Musique et Mémoire de Luxeuil, Musique et Natures en Bauges, festival Bach en Combrailles…); Germany (Ratingen Bachtage festival, Muziekfest Stuttgart); The Netherlands (Oude Muziek Utrecht, Den Haag, Delft); Portugal (Centro Cultural Bélem-Lisbon) and Croatia (Varazdin Baroque Evenings).

Vox Luminis records exclusively for the Belgian Label Ricercar. The ensemble’s first CD, released at the end of 2007, features four vocal works by Domenico Scarlatti, including his famous 10-part Stabat Mater. In May 2010 the ensemble released its second album, Samuel Scheidt: Sacrae Cantiones, which features several world premieres. Vox Luminis’ most recent CD, released in June 2012, created a buzz with an interpretation of Heinrich Schütz’s Musicalische Exequien. This recording has received several prestigious awards such as the Gramophone ‘Recording of the Year’, the ‘Baroque Vocal Gramophone Award’ and the ‘International Classical Music Award’.

Other recordings have also received many awards throughout the world including, Gramophone’s ‘Editor’s Choice’, Diapason d’Or, Choc de Classica, Muse d’Or Baroque, Preis der Deutschen Schallplatten Kritik, Joker de Crescendo and Prix Caecilia.

Vox Luminis is very grateful to have the support of the Federation Wallonie-Bruxelles and the City of Namur.

Lionel Meunier
was born in France. He began his musical education in the music school of his town, Clamecy where he studied solfege, recorder and trumpet. Being passionated for music from his young age, he continued his studies in IMEP, Namur at the age of 18, where he gratuated with high distinction from recorder in 2004 as a student of Tatiana Babut du Mares. He had masterclasses with Jean Tubéry, working at the same time with Hugo Reyne. The same year he started vocal studies in the Royal Conservatoire of the Hague with Rita Dams and Peter Kooij as his teachers.

Since that he has been sung with numerous ensembles such as the Collegium Vocale Gent (P. Herreweghe), World Youth Choir, Arsys Bourgogne (P. Cao), Amsterdam Baroque Choir (T. Koopman), Namur Chamber Choir, Ex Tempore and with soloist ensemble such as I Favoriti de la Fenice (J. Tubery), the Soloists of Namur Chamber Choir, Capella Pratensis and as ripienist with the Nederlandse Bach Vereniging. All these experiences gave him the opportunity to work with many specialists like Christophe Rousset, Tonu Kaljuste, Gustav Leonhardt, Roberto Gini, Jean-Claude Malgoire, Paul Dombrecht, Florian Heyerick, Rinaldo Alessandrini, Richard Egarr...Lionel is also active as a soloist, he has performed the A minor mass of Schubert, Johannes Passion and sever cantatas by J. S. Bach, Haydn's Stabat Mater & Nelson Mass, Kronung's Mass and C minor Mass by Mozart, Mass in G of C. Franck, ect...

He is the artistic director of the ensemble Vox Luminis, group that he created in 2004 with his friend pianist.

This album contains no booklet.

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