Contemporary works by leading living composers sit alongside a programme of Baroque and Renaissance vocal music uniquely reimagined for voices and saxophones.
Early music by J. S. Bach, J. M. Bach, H. Schütz, G. Gabrieli, A Gabrieli, O. de Lassus.
Contemporary works by Owain Park, Roderick Williams, Sarah Rimkus, James MacMillan.
Originally inspired by ‘Revive’ (the Ferio Saxophone Quartet’s 2018 disc of Baroque transcriptions), ‘Revoiced’ explores the magical blend of saxophones and voices, bringing new colours to music from the Baroque and Renaissance, recasting contemporary choral works into a fresh soundworld, and inspiring the creation of new music.
Four of the works on the disc are drawn from Heinrich Schütz’s Geistliche Chor-Music of 1648. In the preface to this collection, Schütz writes that “You can perform some of these pieces […] with an organ or instruments on the choral parts along with a full choir”. He was not, of course, thinking of saxophones, as these wouldn’t be invented for another 200 years, but ‘Revoiced’ gives a fascinating insight into how this music would have sounded on the instruments of the future.
Schütz intended his collection to be a demonstration of good composition without ‘basso continuo’, focussing on contrapuntal techniques as the foundation of compositional technique. It is these contrapuntal techniques that make the music of Schütz and his contemporaries so infinitely adaptable, and perfectly-suited to the treatment of ‘Revoiced’. New transcriptions and arrangements make use of the saxophone’s quasi-vocal timbre to blur the distinction between voices and instruments, creating an intense blend and heightened sense of unity in the ensemble, offering a fresh and exciting route into the Baroque and Renaissance vocal repertory.
Corvus and Ferio have also enjoyed working closely with leading living composers to present four contemporary works, each inspired in its own way by early music. Written specially for the disc and receiving its premiere recording, Owain Park’s Miserere after Allegri is a recomposition of Allegri’s iconic choral work, placing voices and saxophones in dialogue and translating the original music into a rich contemporary soundworld. Roderick Williams gives a similar treatment to a famous work by Byrd in his Ave verum corpus reimagined, here in a brand-new version for choir and saxophones. The disc also features Sarah Rimkus’s refashioning of her beautiful Marian ode Mater Dei, as well as a new arrangement of James MacMillan’s Christus vincit by the Consort’s director, Freddie Crowley.
Executive Producer: Ralph Couzens
Recording Producer: Adrian Peacock; Sound Engineer: David Hinitt
Supported by the Genesis Foundation’s Kickstart Fund