Christophorus Columbus

Christophorus Columbus
Paraísos Perdidos - Lost Paradises - Paradis Perdus
M. Figueras, Hespèrion XXI, La Capella Reial de Catalunya - J. Savall, dir.
Alia Vox AVSA 9850 A+B [SACD-Hx2]


    Disc I

    I Ancient Prophecies and Evocations

    Medea (Tragedy, Act II) - Seneca (1 st. Century a.C.)
    Music: Chorus: G. Binchois; Solo: Anonymous s. XII
    (text quoted and translated by Columbus in his Book of Prophecies)
  1. Introduction
  2. Invocation: Chorus: « Tethysque novos detegat orbes »
  3. Evocation 1: Medea: « Nunc iam cessit pontus et omnes patitur leges »
  4. Invocation: Chorus: « Tethysque novos detegat orbes »
  5. Evocation 2: Medea: « Terminus omnis motus et urbes »
  6. Invocation: Chorus: « Tethysque novos detegat orbes »
  7. Evocation 3: Medea: Venient annis sæcula seris »
  8. Reading: « Venient annis sæcula seris quibus oceanus vincula rerum laxet... »
  9. Invocation: Chorus: « Tethysque novos detegat orbes »
  10. Reading: « Vendrán los tardos años del mundo... »

  11. 1408 Reign of the Nasrid emir Yusuf III
  12. Music: Hymn Sufi (Instrumental improv.)
  13. Music: Improvisation
    Reading: « Description of the beautiful sights of Granada » - Ibn Battuta, Travels
  14. Music: Instr. Al-Andalus Mowachah Billadi askara min aadbi Llama
  15. II Conquests and the birth of Columbus

    1410 (September) Prince Ferdinand's army conquers Antequera
  16. Ancient Romance: El Moro de Antequera (Sephardic song)
  17. Music: Percussion
    Reading: « Having reached Antequera », Chronicle of the Kings of Castile, Ch. XXIX
  18. Music: Zappay (instr.) - CMM 20

  19. 1443 (February) Alfonso V the Magnanimous enters Naples
  20. Music: Collinetto (instr.) - CMM 22
    Reading: « Here I shall relate the graeat honour with which the king was received »,
    From the Diary of Melcior Miralles, chaplain to Alfonso V and of the Cathedral of Valencia
  21. Villota: Dindirindin - Anonymous CMM 127

  22. 1451 (October) Christopher Columbus is born
  23. Music: O tempo bono (introduction)
    Reading: « Seeing as how his forefathers were of the royal blood of Jerusalem... » Hernando Colón
  24. Strambotto: O tempo bono - Anonymous CMM 132
  25. III New Routes and Grand Project

    1474 (25 June) Letter from the Florentine physician Toscanelli to Prince Juan
  26. Music: Voca la galiera (instr.) - Anonymous CMM 18
    Reading: « A map made by my own hand, ... On voyages to the west... »
  27. Basse Dance: Mappa Mundi (Kyrie of the Mass) - Johannes Cornago

  28. 1480 Shipwreck off Cape St Vincent
  29. Music: Chiave, Chiave (instr.) - Anonymous CMM 131
    Reading: « They had been fighting from morning ... », Hernando Colón, Life of the Admiral

  30. 1485 Columbus is married during his time in Portugal
  31. Ancient song (s. XI)
    Reading: « Finding himself near Lisbon... »
  32. Villancico: Meis olhos van por lo mare - Anonymous CMP 453

  33. 1486 - Columbus presents his project to the Catholic Monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella
  34. Reading: « Finally, having recourse to to the Spanish expression ... »
  35. Frottola: In te Domine Speravi - Josquin des Près CMP 84
  36. IV The Waning of Al-Andalus

  37. Improvisation Arabo-Andalusian Song
  38. Music: Improvisation
    Reading: Arabic text by Ibn Zamrak
  39. Kharcha: Ya am laja halki (Andalusia, 13th century)

  40. 1492 (2 January) The Conquest of Granada
  41. Music: La Spagna (instr.)
  42. Music
    Reading: « Pasaron Julio e Agosto... »
    Concerning the Treaty of the Alhambra and the surrender of Granada by Andrés Nernáldez (priest and confessor to Queen Isabella and to the Inquisitor General of Castile)
  43. Reading: « Levanta Pascual... »
  44. Villancico: « Levanta Pascual que Granada es romada » - Juan del Enzina, CMP 184
  45. Romance: Qu'es de ti desconsolado - Juan del Enzina CMP
  46. Disc II

    V The Sephardic Diaspora

  47. Music: Las Estrellas de los cielos (Sefardic anonymous), Improv.

  48. The Saint Inquisition
  49. Hymn: Patres Nostris peccaverunt - Johannes Cornago CMM 2

  50. 1492 (31 March) Expulsion of the unconverted Jews
  51. Music: Improvisation
    Reading: Edict of the Expulsion of the Jews, Joan Coloma (Secretary to the Queen and Queen)
  52. Music: Improvisation on The bread of affliction - Anonymous Sephardic
    Reading: Prayer in Aramaic: Ha lahma 'anya
  53. Music: Prayer in Ladino: The bread of affliction - Anonymous Sephardic

  54. Account of the expulsion of the Jews
  55. Music: Melodí Sefardí (Improv.)
    Reading: « Within a few months... » by Andrés Bernáldez, confessor to Queen Isabella
  56. Hebrew Lament: Mà aidéj? Mà adamélaj - Anonymous
  57. VI Of Discoveries and Wrongs

    1492 (3 October) First Voyage of Columbus
  58. Music: Improv. on a Fantasía de Lluís del Milà (Vihuela)
    Reading: Christopher Columbus, Letter to the Catholic Monarchs (First voyage): « Having expelled all the Jews from your realms and dominions... »
  59. Music: Voca la galiera (instr.) - Anonymous, CMM 18

  60. 1492 (12 October) The New World is sighted from the caravel the Pinta
  61. Reading: « He sailed to the west-south-west. » Christopher Columbus, Ship's log

  62. 1502 Forced conversion of all Moors in the kingdoms of Castille
  63. Music: Lament instr. (improv.)
  64. Music: Prelude to the Nuba
    Reading: « The King and Queen, seeing from the many signs given by the mudejar Moors... »
  65. Music: Nuba Hiyay Msmarqi. Mizan Bsit. Ya muslimin qalbi (Arabo-Andalusian lament, 16th century)

  66. 1502 Moctezuma II is proclaimed emperor of the Aztecs
  67. Nauhatl poem on the fleeting nature of all things
    Music: Improvisation
    Reading: « ¿Cuix oc nelli nemohua oa in tlalticpac Yhui ohuaye? »
  68. Music: Homagio Kogui improv.
  69. Music: Improvisation
    Reading: « ¿Acaso de verdad se vive en la tierra? ... »
  70. VII The Last Will and Testament of Isabella and the Death of Colombus

  71. Music: Departez vous (instr.) - Guillaume Dufay

  72. 1504 The Last Will and Testament of Isabella I of Castile
  73. Music
    Reading: On the treatment of the native indians, Friar Bartolomé de las Casas's reply to the physician Ginés de Sepúlveda
  74. Villancico: Todos los bienes del mundo - Juan del Enzina CMP 61

  75. 1506 (20 May) Christopher Colombus dies in Valladolid
  76. Music: Fortuna desperata - Heinrich Isaac
  77. Music: Introduction for Miserere nostri
    Reading: « In May, 1505 ... »
  78. Music: Miserere nostri / Vexilla Regis - Anonymous CMM 106

  79. Epitaph
  80. Music: Fantasía I - Luís del Milà

  81. Fragment of a letter from the Admiral
  82. Music: Anonymous melody s. XVI
    Reading: « I am not the first Admiral in my family »
  83. Processional Hymn: Hanacpachap cussicuinin (Quechua) - Juan Pérez Bocanegra

Playing time: 78' 14" + 70' 40" = 2h 28' 54"

Núria Espert (narrator, catalan), Francisco Rojas (narrator, catalan), Manuel Forcano (narrator, latin, arabice & aramean), Montserrat Figueras (soprano), Begoña Olavide (mezzo-soprano), Lluís Vilamajó (tenor), Furio Zanasi (baritone)
La Capella Reial de Catalunya:
Arianna Savall, Henar álvarez (soprano), Ana Huete (soprano), Carlos Mena (counter-tenor), David Sagastume (counter-tenor), José Hernández (counter-tenor), Francesc Garrigosa (tenor), Lambert Climent (tenor), Jordi Ricart (baritone), Daniele Carnovich (bass)
Hespèrion XXI
Pierre Hamon (recorder), Jordi Savall (soprano bowed vielle, rebab), Fahmi Alqhai (rebec, bass bowed vielle), Driss El Maloumi ('ud), Andrew Lawrence-King (Renaissance harp), Begoña Olavide (psaltery), Dimitris Psonis (santur), Sergi Casademunt (tenor bowed vielle), Rolf Lislevand (vihuela de mano, guitar), Xavier Díaz-Latorre (vihuela de mano, guitar), Jean-Pierre Canihac (cornet), Lluís Coll (cornet), Beatrice Delpierre (shawm), Daniel Lassalle (sackbut), Richard Cheetham (sackbut), Jordi Giménez (sackbut), Josep Borràs (bajón, dulcian), Carles Cristóbal (bajón, dulcian), Michael Behringer (room organ), Pedro Estevan (percussions), David Mayoral (percussions)
Jordi Savall, dir.

Recording site and date:
[1]-[13], [15], [17], [19b], [21]-[29], [32]-[33], [35], [36], [38]-[53], [55]-[56], [58]-[59] Monasterio de Sant Pere de Rodes, El Port de la Selva, Girona, Spain [05-08/2006];
[14], [16], [18], [19a], [20], [30], [31], [34], [37], [54], [57], [60] See links below
Rel.: November 2006

[14] Alia Vox AV 9809
[16], [18], [19a], [20], [57] Alia Vox AV 9816
[30] Alia Vox AV 9847
[31], [34], [37] Alia Vox AV 9838
[54] Alia Vox AV 9814
[60] Alia Vox AV 9834

Reviewed in:
Diapason (#-p.): 543-75 (january 2007)
Fanfare (Vol./#-p.): 31/2- (November / December 2007)
Gramophone (Vol./#-p.): 84/1018-113 (may 2007)

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Pierre-F. Roberge