V5: Complete Sacred Works

Album cover art for upc 761203526024
Label: CPO
Catalog: 555260-2

Meyer, Gregor; Schicketanz, Isabel; Camerata Lipsiensis

The five works brought together on our complete recording of Johann Kuhnau’s cantatas once again cover a wide spectrum of forms. Presumably, these works as a whole date from the first half of his tenure as music director at St. Thomas in Leipzig – presumably, because once again most of them have been transmitted only in secondary sources, which means that the dating process depends solely on stylistic criteria. Above all the concluding psalm concerto, “Singet dem Herr ein neues Lied,” is one of the most impressive examples of the outstanding artistry of the St. Thomas music director Kuhnau. The opulent instrumental ensemble with two trumpets, timpani, and five-part strings offers a tonally magnificent setting of Psalm 98. Here the individual instrumental and vocal groups engage in vigorous interplay in almost all the sections, thereby perfectly staging the jubilating, singing, and music-making to the glory of God as celebrated in the text. Throughout these works Kuhnau holds in store polyphonic feats, great challenges for the virtuosic talent of his musicians, and highly effective tonal blends and echo effects. Once again the Opella Musica ensemble of soloists founded by Gregor Meyer in 2011 and the historically oriented Camerata Lipsiensis perform the cantatas on the basis of the recently published musicological critical edition.

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