Canciones Sacrae 1625
- Format: CD
Heinrich Schütz's Cantiones sacrae of 1625, from his 40th year (the middle of the road of life), stand apart from his other works. A group of some 40 four-voice motets (11 are presented here), they fall neither among the composer's splendid German adaptations of the Venetian polychoral style nor among the severe, stripped-down pieces he wrote late in life. They are also, intriguingly, neither really Protestant nor Catholic; written for a Catholic prince, they are in Latin, but they draw on a group of meditative texts, adapted from the Bible, that were used by members of both faiths. They are inward works that owe a great deal to Renaissance polyphony but are marked as part of Schütz's own time by their intense text expressivity and by madrigalian chromaticism applied with climactic effect.