Magazine article Gramophone

'Romaria'

Magazine article Gramophone

'Romaria'

Article excerpt

'Romaria'

'Choral Music from Brazil' Aguiar Antiquae preces christianae Almeida Prado Oraculo Araneda Ismalia Escobar Missa breve sobre ritmos populares brasieiros Curitiba Metaphors Lacerda Romaria Pinto Fonseca Jubiaba Santoro Ave-Maria Traditional Carimbo (arr Mahle). Moreninha se eu te pedisse (arr da Silva Ramos) Villa-Lobos Cor dulce, cor amabile. Magnificat-Alleluia Choir of Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge / Geoffrey Webber with Kate Symonds-Joy mez Liam Crangle org Delphian [F] DCD34147 (71' * DDD * T/t)

The rainforest tape that opens this remarkable disc might seem a Brazilian cliche--and in a sense it is. But it is a significant one, forming part of Henrique de Curitiba's Metaphors (1973), a work whose choral component (and thematic material) is the 'Et incamatus est' from the Credo of Victoria's Missa Quarti toni, exploiting astoundingly high soprano-writing, sung with bell-like clarity here by Billie Robinson and Emily Kay. The ear-catching tape is in fact a reconstruction (the original is lost), part of an adventurous collaboration between the Choir of Gonville & Caius and the choral department of the University of Sao Paulo.

Brazilian choral music, even that by Villa-Lobos, is hardly well known outside its native country, so this is an important and revelatory disc. Curitiba's arresting work is followed by a much more conventional set of folksong arrangements by Ernst Mahle, and Osvaldo Lacerda's setting of Carlos Drummond de Andrade's poem 'Romaria', which includes recitation of sections of the text. Pinto Fonseca's Jubiaba is an evocation of a candomble ceremony, forming a Brazilian contrast with the Latin Christian texts of both Emani Aguiar's Antiquae preces christianae and Villa-Lobos's Cor dulce, cor amabile and Magnificat-Alleluia (majestically performed here in the composer's own arrangement with organ), while Aylton Escobar brings folk and church culture together in his striking Missa breve on Brazilian folk rhythms. …

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