Mstation Classical Reviews

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Sat, 03 Feb 2007

Hapsburg Music

Music for the Court of Maximilian II
Jacobus Vaet, Antonius Galli, Pieter Maessens,
Orlandus Lassus
LP, Hyperion Records

Maximilian II succeeded his father, Ferdinand I, in 1564. The Holy Roman Empire was a very big affair taking in Spain, the Low Countries (Belgium, the Netherlands and parts of modern Fraance) as well as most of Central Europe and chunks of the east. It could be expected that the court and its music might have some magnificence, and such is the case.

The primary figure here is Jacobus Vaet who, despite only living into his thirties, produced quite a fair amount of work including masses and motets. The others are not to be dismissed though and include Galli who was fired from Bruges for mistreating choirboys. In the liner notes it explains that this was far from uncommon as choirmasters had to provide for them and were frequently caught out by changes in grain prices.

Cinquecento were formed with the idea of presenting Hapsburg music and they do a fine job of doing so here. (Baron K)

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