Life of Mary, Op 60
Settings of the Life of Mary belong to the central choral works of the Freiburg composers, whose subtly coloured late-romantic sound world leads the listener through the Life of Mary, the Mother of God. The works are among those wonderful rarities, to which SPEKTRAL feels especially committed. Markus Utz leads the ensemble cantissimo in performances of international stature. The CD is a co-production with SWR.
Dominik Wörner, bass-baritone
Markus Utz, conductor
Franz Philipp (1890–1972):
Salve Regina, In illo tempore missus est Angelus Gabriel, Mittit ad Virginem, Exsurgens autem Maria, Magnificat, Et peperit filium, Dormi Jesu blandule, Et benedixit illis Simeon, Stabat Mater, Angelus enim Domini descendit de coelo, Regina caeli laetare, Assumpta est Maria in coelum, Hymnus: surge Victrix, Verbum bonum et suave personemus, Ave Maria
Maria, Himmelskönigin! op. 58,1 (Unserer lieben Frau)
Total recording time: 47.20 | Format: Audio-CD
Live recording: June 2007
Recorded by SWR Broadcasting Corp.
English booklet enclosed / German booklet enclosed (36 pages)
Ord.-No. SRL4-08019 | (p) & (c) 2008 SPEKTRAL | Series SPEKTRAL CLASSICS
Dominik Wörner studied church music in Struttgart (A-Examen), musicology and harpsichord in Fribourg, and organ and voice in Bern (both with soloist’s diploma). His voice instructor, Jakob Stämpfi, was of decisive importance. In 2002, Wörner won first prize in the vocal section of the 13th International Bach Competition and a special prize from the Leipzig Baroque Orchestra. Advanced studies in Lieder interpretation with Irwin Gage in Zurich were completed with distinction, ending his musical training.
His performing repertoire encompasses the great oratorio roles from Monteverdi’s Marian Vespers to Verdi’s Requiem. He has appeared in almost all the countries of Europe, the United States, Asia, and Australia, with conductors including Carl Saint Clair, Christophe Coin, Thomas Hengelbrock, Philippe Herreweghe, Sigiswald Kuijken, and Masaaki Suzuki. Wörner’s Bach interpretations have received considerable international acclaim, and the extraordinary abilities of this young singer are documented in a series of recordings for labels such as Accent, BIS, Capriccio etc. and TV and radio stations. Some of the recordings have received special citations (Echo-Klassik-Preis, Diapasion d’Or).
Wörner gave his successful debut on opera stage at the Baroque Opera Festival in Solothurn, in the title role of Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s “Le Devin du Village”, a production relased by the CPO label.
The German Lied is also very important to Wörner, and he has performed Schubert’s Winterreise with great success in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. A recording with the fortepianist Christoph Hammer has been released recently by ars-produktion. A performance of the Magelone-Cycle by Brahms earlier this year in Toppan Hall (Tokyo) marked Wörner’s song-recital debut in Japan.
Dominik Wörner is also founder and artistic director of his own concert series, called the Kirchheimer Konzertwinter and co-founder of the Kirchheimer Liedersommer.
The ensemble cantissimo had its beginning in 1994 when Markus Utz first assembled a vocal octet for the purpose of performing works by early Baroque composers. In the next few years, the group grew to 20, and now includes young professional singers from Germany and Switzerland. Depending on the demands of the music being performed, the group may expand to as many as 35 participants.
The name is a manifesto of intent: ‘cantissimo’ signifies a focus on projects requiring a cappella singing. The main stress of the vocal group is on long-neglected musical works. Old and new music, extraordinary conception of sound, and vocal improvisation of great sensitivity represent only some facets of the ensemble, which makes a specialty out of unusual programming.The courage to deal with new ideas, especially in the area of contemporary a cappella music, has already given the choir an outstanding position on the international choral scene. The collaboration with composers, instrumentalists and artists of other disciplines is a special priority, and considerable importance is attached to the discovery of new forms of musical expression.
The ensemble cantissimo first established itself with appearances in the “Heiligkreuzer Konzerten Kempten”. Since then, there have been appearances Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Italy with programs devoted to special themes and rarely-heard works, including premiere performances of New Music in renowned Concert Series. Concert productions with Bavarian Radio, SWR, and a film production with the Italian Radio and Television broadcaster RAI are testimony to the high esteem garnered by the ensemble.
Together with the Munich Baroque Ensemble L’arpa festante, the ensemble has commanded considerable attention with their recording of sacred works by Giovanni Battista Martini, a teacher of Mozart.
More information can be found at the homepage: ensemble cantissimo
Markus Utz was born in 1972 in Kempton/Allgäu and is currently professor of Choral Conducting at the Zurich Academy of Music. From 2001 to 2008, he was active as district organist and choir director at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption in Constance.
He studied church music, organ and conducting at the State Academy of Music in Detmold. Thanks to a DAAD scholarship, he was able to study in the renowned conducting class of Prof. Anders Eby at the King’s Music Academy in Stockholm, which influenced him strongly and gave him considerable stimulus. Teaching jobs in conducting followed at the University of Uppsala, the Freiburg Music Academy, and Academy of Pedagogy in Thurgau.
Utz has been the recipient of prizes in various organ competitions and in 2003 received a scholarship from the Scandinavian Bach Academy (Andrew Parrot). In October, 2003, he was the only German finalist in the “Eric Ericson Award”, which is an international conducting competition in Stockholm. The “Heiligkreuzer Konzerte Kempten” has given Markus Utz a great deal of opportunity as a choral and orchestral conductor to learn a broad repertoire ranging from the Rennaissance to the 21st Century. He is one of the promising young German conductors and is Artistic Director of the ensemble cantissimo which he founded while still a student. With the ensemble cantissimo, he has made an outstanding name for himself both inside and outside of Germany with his unusual programming, idea of sound, and in the areas of old and new a cappella music. He appears as organist and guest conductor for various radio choirs throughout Europe.