Music for the Lenten Season: Pergolesi's Stabat Mater Dolorosa

>> Friday, March 26, 2010

Giovanni Battista Pergolesi (4 January 1710 – 16 or 17 March 1736) was an Italian composerviolinist and organist. It is his Stabat Mater (1736), however, for male soprano, male alto, and orchestra, which is his best known sacred work. It was commissioned by the Confraternità dei Cavalieri di San Luigi di Palazzo (the monks of the brotherhood of San Luigi di Palazzo) as a replacement for the rather old-fashioned one by Alessandro Scarlatti for identical forces which had been performed each Good Friday in Naples. Whilst classical in scope, the opening section of the setting demonstrates Pergolesi's mastery of the Italian baroque 'durezze e ligature' style, characterized by numerous suspensions over a faster, conjunct bassline. The work remained popular, becoming the most frequently printed work of the 18th century, and being arranged by a number of other composers, including Johann Sebastian Bach, who used it as the basis for his psalm Tilge, Höchster, meine SündenBWV 1083.  Information: Wikipedia

1. Manuscrit d'Ostuni (Plain chant).

Stabat mater dolorosa
Juxta crucem lacrimosa,
Dum pendebat Filius.

2. Stabat Mater dolorosa.

Stabat mater dolorosa
Juxta crucem lacrimosa,
Dum pendebat Filius.


At the Cross her station keeping,
stood the mournful Mother weeping,
close to Jesus to the last.

Patrizia Bovi (Soprano).
Pino de Vittorio (Tenor).
Bernard Arrieta (Basse).

Dir. Olivier Schneebeli.


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