New York Polyphony
Guerrero: Regina cæli; Palestrina: Missa Papæ Marcelli, Tu es Petrus, Gaudent in cœlis, Sicut cervus/Sitivit anima mea; Victoria: Missa O quam gloriosum, Gaudent in cœlis
What a lovely issue! New York Polyphony are an immensely polished and professional ensemble. They bring their considerable talents here to a programme of Renaissance favourites, combining Palestrina’s evergreen Missa Papae Marcelli with his Tu es Petrus, Gaudent in cœlis and Sicut cervus (with its less-frequently performed secunda pars, Sitivit anima mea). The remainder of the disc is devoted to Victoria’s Missa O Quam Gloriosum, along with his setting of Gaudent in cœlis.
Despite the title, the disc begins in Seville, with a typically mellifluous (and lesser-known) Regina cæli for four voices by Guerrero. Tone, blend and performance are all exemplary – try the glorious ‘Amen’ at the end of the Papæ Marcelli Credo, for example, and wonder anew at Palestrina’s absolute polyphonic mastery. The recital was recorded in the suitably resonant surroundings of Omaha’s St Cecila Cathedral – allowing the many perfectly tuned final chords to linger for one’s ongoing delectation. The performance is completed and complemented by Ivan Moody’s scholarly and exemplary notes.