Gesualdo - O dolce mio tesoro: Sesto Libro di Madrigali, 1611 | Phi LPH024

Gesualdo - O dolce mio tesoro: Sesto Libro di Madrigali, 1611


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Label: Phi

Cat No: LPH024

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 1

Genre: Vocal/Choral

Release Date: 18th November 2016



Collegium Vocale Gent


Philippe Herreweghe


Gesualdo, Carlo

Madrigali libro sesto (Madrigals Book 6)


Collegium Vocale Gent


Philippe Herreweghe


A personality who has provoked considerable controversy over the centuries, Carlo Gesualdo (1566-1613), aristocrat, musician and murderer of his first wife, is no less a composer whose music is marked by subtlety and refinement. His innovative Sixth Book of Madrigals, written two years before his death, exploits all harmonic, chromatic, and textural possibilities to meet the texts’ expressive requirements and proves to be a veritable masterpiece of the genre.

After a first disc devoted to the Italian composer’s sacred works, the Tenebrae Responsoria, Philippe Herreweghe and his Collegium Vocale Gent invite us to (re)discover his secular music for the 450th anniversary of his birth. In masterful fashion, they propose a delicate, expressive reading of this complex music, doing justice to the modernity of the musical language of the Prince of Venosa.

The acoustics of the church in the little Tuscan village of Asciano, where the programme was recorded in 2015, provides an ideal sound setting for this music.


The slippery harmonies of Carlo Gesualdo’s sixth book of madrigals, written in 1611 but sounding centuries ahead of their time, are nailed down with the sharpest, slenderest of pins thanks to the perfect tuning and clear tone of Herreweghe’s ensemble. One to each line, the singers maintain a finely balanced blend, emerging briefly as soloists at moments of emphasis.  Erica Jeal
The Guardian 24 November 2016

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