Heinrich Schütz (1585-1672)

This motet comes from Schütz’s second book of Sacred Symphonies.  Scored for two violins, two voices and continuo, the piece is a marvel of subtle response to text. The text painting can be locally specific - such as the very low register on the word "sterben" [die] - but what is more remarkable is the integration of seemingly contradictory tones into a cohesive whole. The humble and fervent quality of the text is musically elevated to an experience both mystical and ecstatic.

© Michael Beattie

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