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ROSENGART (1757–1810) Veni Sancte Spiritus [2.08] Tristes erant apostola [2.44] Magnificat V [3.27] Veni Creator Spiritus [3.24] Ave Maria [2.07] Hostis Herodes [1.41] Rorate coeli [3.25] Iste confessor Domini [3.33] Christe redemptor omnium [3.22] Cantate Domino [3.08] Tenebrae factae sunt [4.07] Lauda Sion [5.31] Qua vocat me [5.56] Ave maris stella [2.57] Te Deum laudamus [7.32]
Ars Antiqua Austria/Jurgen Essl (organ/director)
rec. Klosterkirche St. Georg Ochsenhausen, 19-21 September
2007 CARUS 83.427 [56.31]
Rosengart was born the year after Mozart in South Germany.
He does not seem to have received a specifically musical
education, but his school in Ulm - run by Augustinians -
must have given him a good grounding given that he ended
up writing a substantial body of music. Rosengart took his
vows at the Monastery of Ochsenhausen in 1775 and though
he was based at a variety of other monasteries, Ochsenhausen
remained the centre of his activities. From 1784 he was professor
of theology and philosophy there. In 1795 he became director
of music and in 1803 deputy prior.
ninety of his compositions have survived and more than half
of these are hymns. These hymns were settings of well known
texts so instead of the communal singing of many verses,
the hymns have been truncated to just 1 verse and doxology,
generally sung by a soloist. These together with Rosengart’s
Magnificats and Psalm settings represent a body of work written
for Vespers, which was the service when composers were able
to experiment a little.
writes generally for four-voice chorus or just soloists,
plus organ, strings and the occasional wind instrument, often
two flutes and two horns. His music is short-breathed but
attractively melodic with a distinctive cast. Having listened
to the disc, you can recognise his signature in the shape
of many of the melodies. Rosengart must have had a group
of good musicians at his service as this is not necessarily
simple music. There is something of early Mozart in his style,
but equally you can detect the galant style of Johann
Christian Bach. As we know little of Rosengart’s training,
it is difficult to assess which composers he was exposed
to during his formative years.
pieces recorded on this disc are all rather short. The longest
is the Te Deum, but only two others are longer than
five minutes. All are attractive and some are extremely vivid.
This vividness arises, in part, because some of the solo
numbers are taken from Rosengart’s operas and oratorios.
These arias, with new sacred words, are the only surviving
remnants of Rosengart’s operatic and oratorio output; none
of his major works seems to survive.
this new disc all but the Te Deum are world premiere
recordings. The Orpheus Vokalensemble, whose previous disc
on Carus enterprisingly interleaved Schumann choruses with
specially composed modern pieces, are joined on this disc
by Ars Antiqua Austria and directed from the organ by Jurgen
disc was made at Rosengart’s church, Klosterkirche St. Georg,
Ochsenhausen. The recording has attempted to reconstruct
as closely as possible the performing conditions of Rosengart’s
day. The numbers of instrumentalists are those specified
in the surviving parts and both singers and instruments performed
from the gallery, gathered around the organ. This had the
effect of giving a fine acoustic blend between performers
and organ, meaning that the performances could be easily
directed from the organ and giving rise, certainly, to a
very attractive sound.
are attractive, charming works given in confident, musical
performances. The soloists are taken from the choir - which
is made up of professional singers. Apart from the odd piece
of smudged coloratura the solo performances are all lively
is not an overly taxing disc, but these charming pieces given
in winning performances provide an interesting picture of
monastic music-making in South-Western Germany.
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