Caldara, Tuma

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COMPOSERS: Caldara,Tuma
LABELS: Virgin Veritas
WORKS: Missa Sanctorum cosmae et damiani
PERFORMER: Monika Frimmer (soprano), Ralf Popken (alto), Wilfried Jochens (tenor), Klaus Mertens (baritone); Westfälische Kantorei, Capella Agostino Steffani/Lajos Rovatkay
CATALOGUE NO: VC 5 45387 2 Reissue (1990)
Vivaldi’s slightly older Venetian contemporary Caldara spent the second half of his working life in Vienna where, in 1715, he became vice-Kapellmeister of the Habsburg court. His output of opera and oratorio was large but he also found time to write some 80 Masses. This disc contains one of them, a festive Missa Sanctorum cosmae et damiani, as well as a little motet and a splendid five-movement gradual Benedicta et venerabilis es. Two short instrumental pieces by Franz Tuma, an Austrian composer who was a generation younger than Caldara, complete the programme. Notwithstanding the strong solo vocal team, the Mass is let down by lacklustre choral singing that seldom realises the declamatory strength of the writing. Nicholas Anderson

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