Tomás Luis De Victoria: Requiem

Album cover art for upc 7619990102354
Catalog: PC10235
Format: CD

La Stagione Armonica; Sergio Balestracci, direction

Tomás Luis de Victoria (1548-1611)
for Empress Maria of Austria (Madrid, 1603)

Tomás Luis de Victoria (1548-1611), after nine years spent as a choirboy in the cathedral of Avila, moved to Rome in 1565, where he had the opportunity of following the teachings of Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, whom he succeeded in 1571 as Master Chaplain of the Roman Seminary; in the same city he encountered the figure of S. Filippo Neri in whose congregation he received religious orders. In 1585 he returned to Madrid, where he became court chaplain of the empress Maria.
The death of Empress Maria of Austria on February 26, 1603 in Madrid was the occasion for the celebration of solemn royal funeral rites, which were considered "the most sumptuous and solemn that had ever been seen in Spain" according to official accounts of the event. The music performed during the funeral of the highly cultured and refined Empress, daughter of emperor Charles V and sister of Phillip II, was composed by Tomás Luis de Victoria. The exceptional circumstances of this funeral induced the composer to place side by side plainsong with polyphony, which is also pervaded with plainchant.
La Stagione Armonica was founded in 1991. Since 1996, the ensemble has been led by the conductor Sergio Balestracci, who is presently its artistic director. The ensemble, specialized in the Renaissance and Baroque repertoire, has been working with acclaimed artists such as Anthony Rooley, Jordi Savall, Gustav Leonhardt, Ottavio Dantone, Andrea Marcon, Reinhard Goebel as well as instrumental groups such as Hesperion XX, Il Giardino Armonico, Accademia Bizantina, and Venice Baroque Orchestra.

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