Johann Hermann Schein (1586-1630)

Schütz' great colleague Johann Hermann Schein published a set of multi-chorus Psalm settings 4 years before Schütz' great Psalmen Davids 1619. Many of the same Psalms are set and the comparison is interesting. Schütz' setting of Psalm 111 is one of his most "modern" pieces and includes a long quote from one of his teacher's compositions, Gabrieli's madrigal Lieto Godea. The Schein setting is also for eight voices but the voices are not divided into two choruses like the Schütz. The Schein piece is more like a Renaissance motet, but is marvelously euphonious and has that composer's usual finish and sheen.

©Craig Smith

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