O Gemma Clarissima: Music in Praise of St Catharine - The Choirs of St Catharine's College, Cambridge; Edward Wickham - Resonus Classics - RES10246

O Gemma Clarissima: Music in Praise of St Catharine

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Total playing time [72:02]

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The Choirs of St Catharine's College, Cambridge
Edward Wickham (director)


The Choirs of St Catharine’s College, Cambridge, with their director Edward Wickham have collaborated once again for this album of Renaissance motets and hymns in praise of St Catharine – one of the most ubiquitous and beloved saints of the Middle Ages who also lends her name to the college (founded in 1473) where both groups are resident.

With composers as diverse as Palestrina, Jean Mouton and Richard Fawkyner (interspersed with Sarum chant for St Catharine) this programme of choral works spans a century in which the cult of St Catharine was at its height, representing the prayers and exhortations of pious communities towards a saint who might represent their interests in the court of heaven.

Album Booklet (PDF)

Tracklist

Jacob Regnart (1540/45–1599)
1. Ave Katherina martir

Ludwig Senfl (1489/91–1543)
2. [Ave Katherina martir]/Costi regis

Adrian Willaert (c.1490–1562)
3. O gemma clarissima

Sarum chant
4. Ave virginum gemma *

Jean Mouton (before 1459–1522)
5. Ave virginum gemma

Sarum chant
6. Virgo sancta Katherina

Nicolas Gombert (c.1495–c.1560)
7. Virgo sancta Katherina *

Sarum chant
8. Virgo flagellatur *

Pierre Vermont (c.1495–c.1532)
9. Virgo flagellatur

Anonymous (early-16th century)
(‘Annaberg’ Choirbook 1/D/506)
10. [Katherinae collaudemus]/Fulta fide Katherina

Sarum chant
11. Nobilis et pulchra *

Walter Frye (fl. 1460–1474)
12. Kyrie ‘Deus creator omnium’
from Missa Nobilis et pulchra

Sarum chant
13. Inclita sancte virginis Catherinae *

Jacquet of Mantua (1483–1559)
14. Inclita sancte virginis Catherinae

Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina (1525/6–1594)
15. Inclytae sanctae virginis Catherinae

Anonymous (early-16th century)
(Copenhagen, MS 1848)
16. Ave virgo Katharina

Sarum chant
17. Passionem gloriose *

Richard Fawkyner (fl. c.1480)
18. Gaude rose sine spina

'Edward Wickham’s intelligent direction brings out the full nuances of this largely unfamiliar music, while his wonderfully knowledgeable programme note both entertains and informs.'

- Early Music Review

'Wickham draws compelling performances of music composed predominantly in the 16th century from his mixed College Choir and the Girls’ Choir […] The crowning glory – and the listener’s final destination – is the quarter-hour motet Gaude rose sine spina by Richard Fawkyner […] here Wickham pushes his singers to really relish this expansive, transcendent music as it grows and glows from piousness to exultant praise.'
Gramophone

'This is a highly creditable release from a college choir who demonstrate that it can offer something of equal interest to their better-known peers up the road.'
Classical Source

'[...] a typical, high quality college choir, well drilled and clear in diction and precise with vowels.'
MusicWeb International

'Edward Wickham’s intelligent direction brings out the full nuances of this largely unfamiliar music, while his wonderfully knowledgeable programme note both entertains and informs.'
Early Music Review

'A beautiful collection of 15th & 16th Century motets and hymns'
Lark Reviews

Credits
© 2019 Resonus Limited
Ⓟ 2019 Resonus Limited
Catalogue No. RES10246
Producer, engineer & editor: Adam Binks
EAN: 5060262791561
Cover image: St Catharine of Alexandria (c.1598) by Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571–1610)
Release date: 30 August 2019