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This first recording in the
Musica Baltica series includes seven cantatas by composers who were active
in Gdansk (Danzig). The music comes from the church archives of St John’s,
St Catherine’s, and St Mary’s. The music of Johann Valentin Meder
(1649-1719), Johann Jeremias du Grain (d. 1756), Johann Balthasar Christian
Freislich (c. 1690-1774), and Johann Daniel Pucklitz (1705-74) gives one a
glimpse of the quality of music in this Baltic city. It shows many typical
late-Baroque characteristics, but there is already a glimmer of early
classicism in the way composers introduce chromaticism and emphasize the
clarity of the melodic line against a slow harmonic accompaniment. Pucklitz
is perhaps the most progressive of the lot in his use of chromaticism. A
survey of each cantata shows how variably these composers approached the
problem of form. All but Freislich’s cantata include the obligatory arias,
chorus, and recitatives.
It is a lovely recording of a repertory that has too long been neglected by performers.
English; texts in German only.
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