The Origin of Fire: Music and Visions of Hildegard von Bingen (C... Cover Art

Antiphon: Caritas Habundant In Omnia

By: Hildegard of Bingen

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DISC 1 for Hildegard von Bingen: The Origin of Fire (CD) Album By Hildegard of Bingen CD Universe
1   Hymn: Veni Creator Spiritus Buy  
2   Sequence: Veni Spiritus Eternorum Alme Buy  
3   Antiphon: O Quam Mirabilis Est Buy  
4   Vision 1 "The Fire Of Creation": Et Ego Homo Buy  
5   Vision 1 "The Fire Of Creation": Et Audivi Buy  
6   Sequence: O Ignis Spiritus Paracliti Buy  
7   Vision 2 "Wisdom And Her Sisters": Vidi Etiam Buy  
8   Vision 2 "Wisdom And Her Sisters": Prima Autem Buy  
9   Responsory: O Felix Anima Buy  
10   Vision 3 "The Fiery Spirit": Iterumque Vocem Buy  
11   Vision 3 "The Fiery Spirit": Et Imago Buy  
12   Hymn: O Ignee Spiritus Buy  
13   Vision 4 "Love": In Vera Buy  
14   Vision 4 "Love": Et Audivi Vocem Buy  
15   Antiphon: Caritas Habundant In Omnia Buy  
16   Antiphon: O Eterne Deus Buy  

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Product Notes

The bad news is that this is Anonymous 4's final recording. The good news is that it's one of their best. Aside from a pair of brief 9th-century chants that flank the main program, the disc focuses on the music of Hildegard von Bingen, the 12th-century Benedictine nun whose liturgical works broke new ground in their visionary texts, rich imagery, and melodic range. The selections here relate to themes associated with the Holy Spirit--the fire of creation, wisdom, the life-giving spirit, and love. The imagery of Hildegard's visionary texts is replete with references to the basic elements--air, earth, fire, and water. The results are boldly original, at least within the restricted confines of chant, which offer compelling listening experiences as performed in the lustrous tones of Anonymous 4. The program includes a pair of Hildegard's most-rhapsodic extended visionary pieces, the consoling "O spirit of fire, bringer of comfort," and "I am the great and fiery power," whose soaring opening musical lines still can shock. Harmonia Mundi, as usual, captures the purity of Anonymous 4's singing in vivid sonics and provides deluxe production values, including a profusely illustrated booklet, with full texts and translations. --Dan Davis

Interview with Marsha Genensky of Anonymous 4
Anonymous 4's Marsha Genensky speaks about the ensemble's swan song in our special interview.

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