Janacek: Choral Works
Label: harmonia mundi
Cappella Amsterdam; Chamber ensemble; Dirk Luijmes, Harmonium; Daniel Reuss, Conductor; Philip Mayers, Piano; Thomas Walker, Tenor; Ernestine Stoop, Harp
Janacek's choral works draw on an extremely rich repertory of folk songs and folk tales. The composer seized on idioms from Bohemian and Moravian traditions, with their characteristic folk dances and rustic nursery rhymes, and on the recently published Moravian Duets of his compatriot Antonin Dvorak, to convey a mixture of emotions, forever shifting between cheerfulness and melancholy, like his subdued harmonies. Here we witness the birth of a musical language which, though deliberately rooted in central Europe, has projected for nearly a century the aura of a universal sentiment.