Godfrey Finger: virtuoso music for two bass viols
Bass viols: Jessica Horsley & David Hatcher
Recording producer: Anthony Rooley
Pan Classics 2011
This recording documents an exciting discovery of outstanding music by a previously little-known composer, Godfrey (Gottfried) Finger (c. 1660–1730). None of the over thirty works for viols from the Sünching Codex recently attributed to Finger had been recorded previously, and most of them were unpublished. The pieces premiered here necessitate not only a major reassessment of Finger’s oeuvre, but also of viol repertoire per se.
Aller guten Dinge sind vier
75 YEARS Schola Cantorum Basiliensis
Canzon del Principe / Preludes choisis / Meister der Italienischen Renaissance / Giorno e Notte
The title of this collection translates as “all good things come in fours”. In this case, the “four” are landmark recordings of the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, the world-famous conservatoire for Early Music in Basel, Switzerland. The conservatoire has initiated numerous excellent recording productions over the years. Canzon del Principe, featuring the viol consort The Earle His Viols, is reissued here as part of the celebrations of “75 years of Artists of the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis”.
La tavola cromatica
Un’accademia musicale dal Cardinale Barberini
Roma intorno al 1635
With works by Bottrigari, Nenna, Waesich, Rossi, Venosa, Buono, Mazzocchi, Kapsberger, Merula, and Eredia
In the 1630’s Cardinal Francesco Barberini, nephew of Pope Urban VIII, was one of the most influential patrons in Rome. He established a musical accademia that encompassed, as well as virtuoso singers and instrumentalists, a consort of viols directed by Virgilio Mazzochi. The viols were setup with additional frets in order to play highly chromatic madrigals and instrumental works. Based on research by musicologist Martin Kirnbauer, The Earle His Viols followed in the footsteps of Barberini’s accademia. The sounds are compelling and overwhelmingly avant-garde.
Canzon del principe
Neapolitan music around 1600
from the manuscript London, British Library MS Add. 3049, compiled by Luigi Rossi (1598–1653)
This recording presents artists of the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis under the artistic direction of Anthony Rooley. It represents the culmination of Rooley’s dream to record the essential oeuvres of the extraordinary manuscript he discovered in the British Library in 1973, MS Add. 30491. Composer, harpist, and organist Luigi Rossi compiled the manuscript in the years around 1615 in Naples (copying in additional pieces later in Rome) and it provides exceptional insight into Neapolitan music at the beginning of the seventeenth century. The works were previously thought to be for harp or organ, but this recording establishes the Rossi manuscript as a major source of viol repertoire.