Performers: A Sei Voci [Gaël de Kerret, Rachid Safir (haute-contre); Régis Oudot, Philippe Balloy (tenor); Bernard Fabre-Garrus (baryton); Bernard Dehont (basse)].
Recording date: August 1988; released 1990
Playing time: 76'45
Elzéar Genet (?-1548), called Carpentras after his birthplace, was an important polyphonist of the early sixteenth century. He served as choirmaster to Pope Leo X, although he probably also served under Leo's predecessor, Julius II. The Lamentations, Carpentras' most famous work, were published in France in 1539 by Jean de Channay, though they were probably written near the beginning of the century. The Lamentations enjoyed extraordinary longevity for their time; they were performed every year at the Pope's chapel from close to the time they were written until 1587, when an edict of Sixtus V replaced them with Palestrina's. The fifty to eighty year lifespan of this single work gives some indication of the considerable regard in which Carpentras' music was held, as does his inclusion in the list of notable composers in the fourth book of Rabelais' Gargantua and Pantagruel. The performance is by a small, all-male chamber choir, and employs a much more soloistic style than in A Sei Voci's later recordings under Bernard Fabre-Garrus.
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