HISTORY OF MUSIC RECOMMENDATIONS SET
Recommendations for the History of Music set is drawn from The Century series from Harmonia Mundi, which features a total of twenty compact discs, each carefully conceived and compiled using the most prestigious recordings in the Harmonia Mundi catalog. When conceived, the entire set would have been perfect for libraries or schools, but most have been discontinued. Each volume in the Century collection is presented in a unique eight-panel digipak with 16-page booklet exclusively designed for this series, fully illustrated and containing texts that are both educational and entertaining.
Selections for the Set
These four recordings cover the development of early Renaissance polyphony, from Ars Nova through the major creative phases of the Renaissance sacred music period. This collection tracks the development of the high points of polyphonic sacred music in the West.
Details for History of Music Set
- Ars Nova: A Revolution in the Late Middle Ages presents Ars Nova, a musical style that came into being during this time and which literally was a "new art" in sacred musical composition. It was characterized by virtuosity and complexity, was both applauded and condemned, and provided not just the first polyphonic masses, but laid the groundwork for later Renaissance sacred music.
- Ars Subtilior: The Dawn of the Renaissance presents Ars Subtilior, a further music style that developed in Renaissance sacred music, characterized by rhythmic complexity, changes of mete, syncopations and changes in register. The CD focuses in three areas: Ars Subtilior, 15th Century English sacred music and Franco-Flemish polyphony. As with the whole series, the liner notes are substantial in discussing these styles, their development and history.
- Renaissance Sacred Music presents the main body of Renaissance sacred music, and includes most of the composers that come to mind with that term is used. The composition of the polyphonic mass, as the musical touchstone of the period because of its status, beauty and complexity, is discussed and illustrated, so that the reader/listener understand how Medieval and Renaissance sacred music began with existing Gregorian melodies, and by adding a new voice and styles created a new sacred form.
- Songs of the Renaissance focuses on songs of the Renaissance, that is to say, mainly on the non-sacred polyphonic compositions of the names we know so well. By doing so it reminds us of the breadth of composition work done by almost all of these composers, and by illustrating the movement of the Medieval and Renaissance developmental process from sacred to secular, begins to lay the foundation for what we know think of as "classical music.