Psalmen & Friedensmusiken ends Heinrich Schutz series on a strong note

The Carus traversal of Heinrich Schutz works ends with a collection of commissioned works. For the most part, the music on this 2 CD set marks important occasions in the Dresden court. Some were commissioned for birthdays, others for treaty signings, and so on.

Schutz studied in Venice with Giovanni Gabrielli (and perhaps with Claudio Monteverdi). There are many elements of Gabrielli’s style in these works. Small choirs echo each other across space. Sometimes they’re also treated contrapuntally. The extensive use of brass adds a noble air.

If you’ve been following the series, you’ll hear many familiar voices. Dorothee Mields, Gerlinde Sämann, David Erler, and Georg Poplutz (just to name a few) deliver fine performances. In fact, everyone involved maintains the same high performance standards set by earlier recordings in the series.

After 19 volumes, these artists and ensembles have internalized Schutz’s style — and Hans-Christoph Rademann’s interpretation of it. As always, these are models of clarity. No matter how complex Schutz’s writing, vocal lines sound clean and transparent.

The release even includes a world premiere recording, “Trostlied” SWV 502. This simple and beautiful work was written in memorium for an infant. It’s Schutz at his most personal, and a fine way to end the series.

Heinrich Schutz: Psalmen & Friedensmusiken
Complete Recording, Vol. 20
Gerlinde Sämann, Isabel Schicketanz, sopranos; Maria Stosiek, Dorothee Mields, mezzo-sopranos;
David Erler, Stefan Kunath, counter-tenors; Georg Poplutz, Tobias Mäthger, tenors; Felix Schwandtke, bass; Martin Schicketanz, baritone
Dresdner Kammerchor, Hans-Christoph Rademann, director|
Carus 83.278 2 CD Set

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