Vivaldi's Dixit Dominus, RV 807, was added to the Vivaldi canon only in 2005; it was long attributed to Baldassare Galuppi. That shows you how minor composers don't get their due; it's a marvelous work, but it's only getting recordings now that Vivaldi's name is attached to it. At any rate, it's well worth hearing in this excellent performance by the rising British group La Nuova Musica, which has both vocal and instrumental components. They move like a well-oiled machine, making possible the clear communication of such vivid details as the musical depiction of a stream in the strings in the countertenor aria De torrente in via bibet (track 8) and the unusually elaborate fugue that concludes the work. This Dixit Dominus resembles other Vivaldi settings of the same text and is also a bit like a darker, more operatic Gloria, RV 589, so if you've heard one too many performances of that work (or if your choir has done it one too many times), give this stirring, rather operatic piece a try. The companion Dixit Dominus, HWV 232, by Handel was composed earlier (it is a work from Handel's youthful stay in Italy) and isn't yet quintessentially Handelian, but it's a well-wrought work, not terribly often heard, and it's a fine companion piece to the Vivaldi. The central solo cantata In furore giustissimae irae, RV 626, of Vivaldi will not be appearing on any amateur choral series; it's a punishingly difficult work, probably composed for the power of the male castrato, and it receives a speaker-shredding performance here from soprano Lucy Crowe. The solos in the two Dixit Dominus settings are taken by choir members, and the contrast enlivens the program as a whole. With clear studio sound from Harmonia Mundi, this release merits a place in any Baroque choral library.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by James Manheim
|Dixit Dominus, RV 807|
|In furore iustissimae irae, RV 626|
|Dixit Dominus, HWV 232|