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Marian Motets and Instrumental Music from the Archbishop‘s Archives in Kroměříž


F10239   [8595017423925]   released 11/2019

1 Johann Heinrich Schmelzer (1623–1680) : Sonata à 4 detta la Carolietta 
2 Bonifazio Graziani (c.1604–1664) : Ad Matrem venite (Per la Madona)  
3 Giovanni Valentini (c.1582–1649) : Canzon à doi Cornetto e Trombone 
4 Alberik Mazák (1609–1661) : Ave Maria 
5 Heinrich Ignaz Franz von Biber (1644–1704) : [The Annunciation] 
6  Giovanni Antonio Rigatti (c.1613–1648) : Laudate pueri à voce sola 
7 Georg Arnold (1621–1676) : Canzon à 4 
8 Georg Muffat (1653–1704) : Ciacona 
9 Adam Michna z Otradovic (?1600–1676) : Zdrávas Maria Panno 
10 Giovanni Legrenzi (1626–1690) : Sonata à due violini LA PIA 
11 Anonym : Salve Regina à 4 
12 Pavel Josef Vejvanovský (1639/40–1693) : Sonata à 4 
13 Alexandro de Poglietti (? –1683) : Sonata à 3

Capella Ornamentata  
Richard Šeda: artistic director

Marie Rosová: soprano  
Lucie Sedláková Hůlová: Baroque violin 
Richard Šeda: cornett, recorder 
Jaroslav Kocůrek: natural trumpet  
Jakub Zívalík: sackbut 
Michaela Bieglerová: dulzian 
Tereza Samsonová: theorbo  
Marek Čermák: chamber organ, cembalino 
Miloslav Študent: arcilute, Baroque guitar

play all Ad matrem venite 56:39
Sonata a 4 detta la Carolietta 6:03
Ad Matrem venite (Per la Madona) 4:54
Canzon a doi Cornetto e Trombone 3:46
Ave Maria 2:45
[Zvěstování/ The Annunciation] 4:43
Laudate pueri a voce sola 3:45
Canzon a 4 3:01
Ciacona 5:31
Zdrávas Maria Panno 4:14
Sonata a due violini LA PIA 4:55
Salve Regina a 4 2:55
Sonata a 4 4:10
Sonata a 3 5:17

I have always been strongly drawn to the music collection at the Archbishop’s Palace in Kroměříž. Incidentally, I bought my first zink (cornetto) in Kroměříž. In 2008, when I was studying the Marian solo motets of Bonifazio Graziani at the Royal Library in Copenhagen, I had no idea that I would stumble upon a peculiar feature of the Kroměříž music collection. Thanks to that modest discovery, the idea arose of making a “Kroměříž CD” of Marian chamber motets for soprano supplemented with instrumental music reflecting the ensemble’s instrumentation. In this brief introductory text, I will offer some basic information about the composers of the recorded compositions and their connection to the archives in Kroměříž. 
     The musical ensemble of Bishop Karl II von Liechtenstein-Kastelcorn in Kroměříž is 
a phenomenon that still attracts the interest of experts and laypersons. Its wealth of repertoire and wide range of available instrumentation made it one of the most important musical ensembles in the Czech lands in the period after the Battle of White Mountain. Indisputably, the composer, trumpet player, and Kapellmeister Pavel Josef Vejvanovský (1639/1643-1693) had a major influence over the development of the ensemble, and his personal collection now constitutes the bulk of the oldest portion of the Kroměříž archives. I would like this recording to be a tribute to Bishop Karl and to Pavel Vejvanovský.
     Johann Heinrich Schmelzer was the Kapellmeister of the imperial court ensemble and one of the most important violinists of his era. In his youth, he played zink (cornetto) at St Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna. The title of his Sonata à 4 detta la Carolietta conceals the name of Karl, the archbishop in Kroměříž. In the sonata, he makes masterful use of four instruments that were very widely used at the time – violin, zink, trombone, and dulcian. Each of the instruments is successively presented in a solo role.
     15 August 1669 saw the publication in Rome of the collection Motetti a voce sola by Bonifazio Graziani containing the Marian motet Ad Matrem venite for soprano and basso continuo, which also appeared in print there in 1684. A peculiar feature of Liechtenstein’s Kroměříž collection is that one finds a Moteto à 6 there with Alessandro Poglietti identified as the composer, but apart from a slight difference in the ritornello, it is entirely identical to Graziani’s Ad Matrem venite, which is certain to have been composed by Graziani in view of the date of publication. Poglietti skilfully added five viola parts to the motet, giving the composition a more ceremonial character. One wonders what led Poglietti to make this arrangement and moreover to fail to acknowledge Graziani’s authorship. From 1661, Poglietti was the court organist to Emperor Leopold I in Vienna, but he later applied unsuccessfully for a position with Bishop Karl.
     Giovanni Valentini, Kapellmeister of the imperial court ensemble, had an extraordinarily great reputation, and he enjoyed the favour of consecutive emperors – Ferdinand II and Ferdinand III, whom he taught music. Valentini’s Canzon à doi Cornetto e Trombone (ca. 1630) is uniquely preserved in a manuscript at the Kremsmünster Benedictine Abbey in Austria. A few of Valentini’s vocal compositions for large forces have also been uniquely preserved in Kroměříž. Judging by the difficulty of the zink parts, he must have had very capable players at his disposal in Vienna. 
     Alberik Mazák was a native of the Silesian town Ratiboř (now Racibórz, Poland), which then belonged to the Lands of the Bohemian Crown. At the age of twenty, he entered the Cistercian monastery in Heiligenkreuz near Vienna, where he lived in the seclusion of the ascetic order until his death. There is almost no information about Mazák’s life. We have only fragmentary reports from the chronicles of the monastery in Heiligenkreuz and from two of Mikuláš Reiter’s letters in the archives in Kroměříž. Thanks to Ondřej Šmíd, a complete edition of Mazák’s compositions can be downloaded online free of charge. The Marian antiphon Ave Maria is found in Mazák’s printed collection CULTUS HARMONICUS published in Vienna in 1649. The same collection has also been preserved in Kroměříž.
     The Bohemian native Heinrich Ignaz Franz von Biber, a pupil of J. Schmelzer, was a friend and colleague of Pavel Vejvanovský. He apparently came to Kroměříž from Vienna in 1668, and he remained there for nearly two years, but he left the bishop’s services without giving prior notice and without the bishop’s knowledge, and he went to Salzburg, where he served at the court of Archbishop Maximilian. From Schmelzer’s letters, we know that Biber’s departure greatly upset the bishop, who interpreted it as an expression of ingratitude. Biber did, however, send compositions to Kroměříž, mostly in the form of autographs, and these now grace the Liechtenstein collection. Biber’s violin sonata titled “The Annunciation” is from the manuscript collection called the Rosary Sonatas (1678).
     Giovanni Antonio Rigatti was born in Venice, where he spent most of his short life. He was a priest at St Mark’s Basilica and at the church Santa Maria Formosa. Laudate pueri à voce sola con due violini comes from the printed collection Messa e salmi concertati (1640) and it is dedicated to Emperor Ferdinand III, apparently in the hope of obtaining a position at the Viennese court.
     The composer and organist Georg Arnold was born in 1621 in Valtice (Feldsberg) in southern Moravia in Lichtenstein’s dominion. He was the organist at the St Mark’s, a parish church in Wolfsberg, and from 1649 he served as court organist in Bamberg for Prince-Bishop Melchior Otto Voit von Salzburg. Later, he assumed the duties of choirmaster at the Bamberg Cathedral. His Canzon à 4 has been preserved in the printed collection Canzoni, ariae et sonate for 1 – 4 parts, published in Bamberg in 1659 and in Kroměříž in a copy dated ca. 1660.
While staying in Prague in 1677, the German composer Georg Mufatt wrote an enchanting sonata for violin and basso continuo (Sonata Violino Solo), and with it he applied unsuccessfully for the position in the Kroměříž ensemble of Bishop Karl II von Liechtenstein-Kastelcorn that was held at the time by Pavel Josef Vejvanovský. His Ciacona for organ, a very popular musical form at the time, has been preserved in manuscript in the collection APPARATUS MUSICO ORGANISTICUS (1690), and it is dedicated to Emperor Leopold I.
     Adam Michna z Otradovic, a composer and poet from Jindřichův Hradec, is one of the most important Czech figures of the seventeenth century, and it was he who initiated the flourishing of Czech Baroque musical culture. For many generations to come, he was an inspiration for composers developing the traditions of Czech music. His manuscript MISSA SANCTI WENCESLAI is uniquely preserved in Kroměříž, as are two of his printed collections. Zdrávas Maria Panno (Hail, Virgin Mary) is a song of great melodic and poetic beauty. It is intended for the Feast of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary and it taken from Michna’s collection SVATOROČNÍ MUZIKA (Music of the Holy Year), published in Prague in 1661.
     In 1664 Giovanni Legrenzi, the maestro di capella at St Mark’s in Venice, published a collection containing the Sonata LA PIA à due violini. The same sonata has been preserved at the Austrian National Library in Vienna in an anonymous manuscript collection of fifteen sonatas. One of Legrenzi’s printed collections has also been preserved in Kroměříž. The Marian antiphon Salve Regina à 4 Alto solo et 2 violini, tenore trombon o viola has been preserved uniquely in Kroměříž thanks to a score reconstructed by Pavel Vejvanovský. To adapt the work to the instrumentation of our ensemble, we have transposed this Marian antiphon up a fifth, something that would not have been especially unusual for practice of the period. Some parts of this intimate work were composed in the style of the ciacona, a kind of lullaby, corresponding to its placement at the conclusion of vespers. 
     The Sonata à 4 for 2 violins and 2 violas da brazzo from 1667 by Pavel Josef Vejvanovský has been preserved in the archive in Kroměříž. In the 17th century, the composition of the string compositions could alternate with wind instruments, depending on the technical possibilities. The recording of this sonata is also a world première.
     The CD concludes with Alessandro de Poglietti, whose name we have already encountered, and with an interesting combination of the sound of the clarion and the zink. His Sonata à 3 Cornetto, Flauto, Fagotto con Organo has been preserved only in Kroměříž. The cornetto part literally begs to be played on clarion, because it contains all of the notes that are playable on that instrument. On the other hand, the Flauto part actually appears to be a part for zink. Poglietti’s music is unquestionably some of the finest of its day. For more details about the archbishop’s archives, I would refer the reader to studies by Jiří Sehnal including Pavel Vejvanovský a biskupská kapela v Kroměříži (Pavel Vejvanovský and the Bishop’s Ensemble in Kroměříž, 1993) and Pavel Vejvanovský and the Kroměříž Music Collection (2009).

Richard Šeda

The ensemble Capella Ornamentata has founded in 2007 by cornett´s player Richard Šeda. The ensemble´s main mission is the effort about authentic interpretation mostly of sacral music 16th and 17th century. Its members play in respected both Czech and foreign old music ensembles. Capella Ornamentata has many appearances at the prestigious old music festivals in the Czech Republic so as well in abroad. Into many projects are invited foreign musicians too. Capella Ornamentata presents itself in radio and TV broadcasting.

Richard Šeda is a graduate of the České Budějovice Conservatoire, where he studied trumpet in the studio of Jiří Pelikán. Already as a student, he took an interest in the historically informed interpretation of early music. He initially taught himself to play the zink, and he gained his first performing experience in the ensemble Ritornello under the leadership of M. Pospíšil. In 2005 he began his private study of the playing of the zink at a number of master classes in Prague and in France under the French zink player Judith Pacquier. He has performed with many foreign early music ensembles including Concerto Copenhagen, the Marini Consort Innsbruck, L’Arpa Festante München, the Wiener Hofburgkapelle, and the Clemencic Consort Wien. In the Czech Republic, he collaborates with such ensembles as Cappella Mariana, Collegium Marianum, Ensemble Inégal, and Collegium 1704. The town Dačice, Richard Šeda’s birthplace, represents another integral part of his musical life. At the local Elementary School of the Arts, he teaches pupils to play the recorder, zink, and trumpet, and he often performs there with his pupils, who have frequently enjoyed success at nationwide Elementary School of the Arts competitions. He is a cofounder and director of musical programming for Dačice Baroque Days, a regional Baroque arts festival. He also devotes himself to musical research and creating modern editions of old printed music. His scholarly contribution to the study of music at the archives in Kroměříž was also mentioned in Jiří Sehnal’s book Pavel Josef Vejvanovský and the Kroměříž music collection.

© Studio Svengali, May 2024
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