Luca Maranzio – Missa Jubilate Receives World Recording Premiere

This is the world premiere recording of the Missa Jubilate of Luca Maranzio. Maranzio was renowned for his madrigals (over 500 we know of). He knew how to write for the human voice, and how to illustrate texts through vocal lines and textures. This release shows those skills carried over into his sacred music, too.

The works receiving their recording premiers were only recently identified as Maranzio’s. The manuscripts were preserved in Vercelli’s Archivio Capitolare without attribution. Only after years of painstaking research did musicologists confirm the works as Maranzio’s.

It’s a fascinating story, and one the booklet goes into detail about. But in the end, what counts is the music.

And it’s glorious. Marenzio was a contemporary of Palestrina. There’s plenty of contrapuntal development in the mass. But it has a much lighter texture than any of Palestrina’s (at least to my ears). The lines also seem more tuneful. Perhaps that’s Marenzio the madrigalist coming through.

The Cappella Musicale della Cattedrale di Vercelli has a wonderful vocal blend. There’s a luminous quality to the sound, especially when the entire ensemble is singing. The recording is also quite good. There’s enough ambiance to let the music breathe, but not too much to muddy the polyphony.

Also included are both versions of the Jubilate Deo a 8, and the Magnificat octavi toni. Hearing alternative versions of the same work provide insight into the composer’s creative process.

Luca Marenzio: Missa Jubilate
Magnificat Sexti Toni
Cappella Musicale della Cattedrale di Vercelli; Don Deis Silano, director
Stefano Demicheli, organ; Federico bagnasco, violin

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