Thursday, April 13, 2017

Voices of Music Uploads Another Viol Video from the Ansel Adams House

Regular readers probably know by now that the next best thing to attending a Voices of Music recital is visiting the Voices of Music YouTube channel, with its consistently impressively edited high-definition video documents of concert performances. This past December saw the first release of videos taken from the The Voice of the Viol project, inaugurated by Director Adaiha MacAdam-Sommer this past October. The two videos uploaded at that time were both taken from a recital at the Ansel Adams house here in San Francisco.

A third video from that same concert was uploaded about a month ago:

As in the other two videos from this recital MacAdam-Somer plays tenor viol, joined by Joanna Blendulf on treble, and both Farley Pearce and Elisabeth Reed on bass. The music being performed is a setting of the “In Nomine” tune composed by William Byrd. The source for this tune is the “Gloria Tibi Trinitas” plainchant, which was adopted by John Taverner. Just about every important English composer from Thomas Tallis to Henry Purcell composed a setting, usually using the tune itself as a cantus firmus in long, evenly sustained notes. (The Fitzwilliam Virginal Book has four “In Nomine” pieces, two by John Bull and one each by John Blitheman, listed as William Blitheman in the manuscript, and John Parsons.)

The other recent video to be added to the YouTube channel was taken from the Voices of Music Holiday Concert given in December. The title of that concert was Virtuoso Concertos, but this is a recording of an ensemble performance of festive dance music appropriate for the season. The dance is a courante; and the source is Terpsichore, a collection of French instrumental dances compiled by Michael Praetorius in 1612:

This performance is thoroughly delightful for many reasons, not the least of which is the improvised percussion work by Peter Maund. All of the other performers are familiar Voices of Music players: Carla Moore, Gabrielle Wunsch, Lisa Grodin, and Maxine Nemerovski on violin, Maria Caswell on viola, Reed and Tanya Tomkins on cello, Pearce on violone, Hanneke van Proosdij on harpsichord, and David Tayler (still the primary force behind capturing these events on video) on archlute.

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