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“A magnificent, essential release...If we have ever had a finer Palestrina recording available, I've not heard it.”
In Tune Magazine

In stock

Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, hailed through the centuries as “Prince and Father of Music,” composed sacred works of unsurpassed grace and beauty. This recording was made to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Palestrina’s death and includes several motets and two rarely recorded masses. The Missa “Descendit Angelus Domini” was recorded from a new transcription made from the partbooks in the Vatican Library. The motets were selected for their exquisite expression of the texts. This is a worthy celebration of the man who represents the highest ideals of the Renaissance

Premiere and Only Works

Track 1-6 Missa “Descendit Angelus Domini”
Track 12-17 Missa Beatae Mariae Virginis II

Critical Acclaim


  • “...the choir's performance offers textures and dynamics that bring us closer to a romantic vision in its performance. Elizabeth C. Patterson conducts the choir with great enthusiasm and achieves great clarity in each imitative entry of the voices, endowing all the lines with their proper form and prosody, allowing the ensemble to be methodically structured in each piece, something difficult to achieve in sections as long as the Creed and Gloria of each Mass.”
    RITMO (Spain)

  • “The trick to mastering counterpoint lies in mastering it completely ... herein lies the glory of this magnificent, essential release. The balance of seriousness with humanity comes through as much as the balanced voices ... Patterson clearly has genius in selecting just the right tempos and dynamics ... serious, winning, and convincing. If we have ever had a finer Palestrina recording available, I've not heard it.”
    In Tune Magazine

  • “They [Gloriæ Dei Cantores]have demonstrated a polished musicality, combined with a versatile command of a wide-ranging repertoire of literature and styles ... the richness and sonority is almost hypnotically beautiful. Palestrina was, after all, one of the great composers of music for grouped human voices, and there is no reason why we should not enjoy such luscious, expansive (yet stylistically sensitive) realizations of his music. Good notes; full texts and English translations. Alike to the Palestrina collector or the lover of wonderful choral sound, this release is warmly recommended.”
    American Record Guide
  • “... this group deserves all the praise it gets for its recordings and international concert tours. It's a remarkable achievement. Recommended.”

  • “Imagine you are in one of the oldest and most beautiful cathedrals in Italy. Close your eyes and hear a Palestrina mass being sung. The counterpoint is balanced and serene; the sound is clear, each vocal line distinctly heard. Such is the impression left by the excellent sound reproduction for the group Gloriæ Dei Cantores, conducted by Elizabeth Patterson. ... a fine, well-trained vocal sound. The purity of vowels combined with the tone of the voices provide a lovely effect. For that alone it is worth listening to this disc.”
    Choral Journal

  • “... there is a depth of emotion these singers bring to their work that goes beyond mere professional performance practice. The freshness and immediacy here breathes life back into the veins of history. Truly beautiful singing.”
    Harmonia Early Music Newsletter

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UPC: 709887010620