The second project of Collegium Vocale Gent and Philippe Herreweghe for Phi to focus on Renaissance music is devoted to one of the most remarkable of all composers: Carlo Gesualdo. Both his life, characterised by extravagant and excessive behaviour, and his compositions left their mark on the history of music. Although best known for his secular music, he also wrote an almost equivalent number of sacred works that demonstrate his fervent faith. The Tenebrae Responsories comprise a set of pieces for Holy Week, in all twenty-seven motets for six voices, a psalm, and a hymn, published under his own supervision in 1611. As in his madrigals, the music is underpinned by many unexpected chromatic variations that create expressive images evoking tears, the earthquake, the despair of Christ on the cross, etc. The acoustics of the church of the village of Asciano in Tuscany, where the programme was recorded in 2011, create the perfect soundscape for this music.

Klara 10 award