Veni Domine – Advent & Christmas at the Sistine Chapel

After Cantate Domino (2015) and Palestrina (2016), this year’s Veni Domine: Advent & Christmas at the Sistine Chapel is the third installment of the unique collaboration between Deutsche Grammophon and the Vatican’s own Sistine Chapel Choir.

For the first time, on this recording, the Sistine Chapel Choir and director Monsignor Massimo Palombella have invited a female singer to record with them – global superstar Cecilia Bartoli.

Although it is well documented that there were no women in the Sistine Chapel Choir during the Renaissance, there is evidence that women may well have sung there back in the Middle Ages. Thus, for this unique collaboration, Maestro Palombella and Cecilia Bartoli reached back in time to the composer Pérotin and selected the beautiful song “Beata Viscera Mariae Virginis” to bring the artistry of Bartoli and the Sistine Chapel Choir together. Bartoli’s clear and fascinating timbre magically blends in the sound of the choir as well as the chapel and makes a century-old song sound refreshingly modern.

What links all the music on this album is its inclusion in a new critical edition based on manuscripts or early editions held in the Vatican Library. Balancing genuine authenticity with fresh thinking: This series of state-of-the-art recordings by the Sistine Chapel Choir for Deutsche Grammophon makes an authoritative and profoundly beautiful case for the continuing relevance of Humanist, Renaissance and Baroque masterpieces in the Papal Celebrations of the 21st Century, and in the wider world. Emphatical and not an exercise in archaeology, this album is breathing new contemporary life into a precious tradition at the highest artistic level and transferring its listeners into a meditative, peaceful and conscious state.

Fine Music

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1. Gregorian Chant – Gaudete in Domino semper
2. Pérotin – Beata viscera Mariae Virginis (with Cecilia Bartoli)
3. Gregorian Chant / Guillaume Dufay – Conditor alme siderum
4. Josquin Desprez – Missus est Gabriel
5. Giovanni Pierluigi da Palsterina – Canite tuba in Sion – Rorate coeli desuper
6. Giovanni Maria Nanino – Hodie nobis caelorum Rex – Gloria in excelsis Deo
7. Giovanni Pierluigi da Palsterina – Hodie Christus natus est
8. Jean Mouton – Queramus cum pastoribus
9. Tomàs Luis de Victoria – Quem vidistis pastores – Dicite quidnam vidistis
10. Giovanni Pierluigi da Palsterina – Dies sanctificatus illuxit nobis
11. Gregori Allegri – Nasceris, alme puer
12. Gregorian Chant / Luca Marenzio – Christe, Redemptor omnium
13. Tomàs Luis de Victoria – O Magnum mysterium
14. Clemens non Papa – Magi veniunt ab oriente – Magi videntes stellam
15. Giovanni Pierluigi da Palsterina – Reges Tharsis et insulae
16. Giovanni Pierluigi da Palsterina – Diffusa est gratia