The Royal Theatre in the Old Orangery in the Royal Łazienki Museum
Augustus II the Strong – Elector of Saxony and the first king from the Saxon Wettin dynasty to reign in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth – is remembered in the annals of history as the one who entangled Poland in a number of internal and external conflicts. At the same time, it is difficult to deny his involvement in the development of artistic life at the Polish-Saxon court. His presence in Warsaw gave rise to the creation of magnate-founded ensembles and even opera theaters – modeled on royal ones.
The unexpected death of the king in the Saxon Palace in Warsaw on the 1st of February 1733 triggered an avalanche of mourning ceremonies held accross the Commonwealth, during which – in addition to the chorale – vocal and instrumental music by contemporary masters was probably performed, depending on the capabilities of particular centers. The concert will feature both traditional Gregorian antiphons and responsories as well as vocal and instrumental works by the most outstanding musicians of that time.
Jan Dismas Zelenka was one of the most important composers at the Dresden court. Chromatic melodic processions, the dark sound of wind instruments and the extraordinary expression of the vocal parts of the psalm De profundis ZWV 50 from 1724 constitute the extraordinary value of the work dedicated to the memory of the composer’s father. No less moving is Miserere, ZWV 57 from 1738, with a far more dramatic character.
The central part of the program showcases a piece by the most outstanding Polish composer of the late Baroque era – the mournful Conductus funebris by Grzegorz Gerwazy Gorczycki, which most likely adorned the ruler’s funeral ceremonies at the Wawel court in Krakow. The musical arrangement of the text perfectly reflects the theological meaning of the Catholic funeral rite, and the original structure of the entire composition fully illustrates the talent and skill of the Wawel master.
1. Antiphon (chorale): Si iniquitates observaveris
2. Psalm: Jan Dismas Zelenka (1679-1745) – De profundis clamavi, ZWV 96
3. Antiphon (chorale): Exsultabunt Domino ossa humiliata
4. Psalm: Jan Dismas Zelenka – Miserere, ZWV 57
5. Responsory: Grzegorz Gerwazy Gorczycki (ok. 1665-1734) – Subvenite Sancti Dei (Conductus funebris)
6. Responsory: Grzegorz Gerwazy Gorczycki – Libera me (Conductus funebris)
7. Absolution (chorale): Kyrie – Pater noster – A porta inferi
8. Antiphon: Grzegorz Gerwazy Gorczycki – In paradisum (Conductus funebris)
9. Antiphon (chorał): Ego sum resurrectio et vita
10. Canticum Zachariae: Alessandro Stradella (1639-1682) – Benedictus
11. Hymn: Jan Dismas Zelenka – Salve Regina ZWV 137
THE CHAMBER CHOIR OF THE POLISH ROYAL OPERA
RENATA SZCZYPIOR CHOIR MASTER
KRZYSZTOF GARSTKA POSITIVE ORGAN, CONDUCTOR
Duration: approx. 1 h 15 min
The seats in the auditorium are not numbered.