Orthodox Music (84)
The repertoire on this CD reflects the "ever-presence" of the Most Holy Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary (Panagia) in Orthodox hymnography. Out of the vast range of possibilities, Archangel Voices has selected a mix between works that are familiar and traditional and those that reveal new vistas of the sacred repertoire. A number of works—by such Russian masters as Chesnokov, Kastalsky, Nikolsky, and Yaichkov—are appearing for the first time in English adaptations. Works by relatively unknown 20th-century composers such as Ilyashenko and Cecil A. Bailey are brought to light for the first time. Works by modern-day Orthodox composers, currently living and creating in North America—Archpriest Paul Harrilchak, Vladimir Morosan, Kurt Sander, Benedict Sheehan, Richard Toensing, and Nazo Zakkak—round out the program.
The psalm "Miserere mei Deus" is a prayer for mercy, contrition and renewal. Since the 1630's, Gregorio Allegri's famous setting has been sung at dawn during Holy Week, while the Pope kneels in prayer in the solemn candlelit atmosphere of the Sistine Chapel. This contemporary version, recorded in the spectral grandeur of Osnabruck Cathedral, adds new material composed by Vladimir Ivanoff to the ethereal harmonies of the Osnabruck Youth Choir and the elegiac brass tones of the cornetto, recreating the mysterious beauty of this sacred classic.
Sacred Treasures V: From A Russian Cathedral is the latest installment in the critically acclaimed Hearts of Space series of sacred choral music. Each piece from this collection is infused with a deeply devotional, solemn and lyrical quality. The voices are spacious and warm, creating an atmosphere of holiness and benediction.