Sebastián de Vivanco (c1551-1622) is one of the greatest composers of the Spanish Golden Age, but is also one of its most neglected. Scholars and performers are only now starting to appreciate Vivanco’s worth: he was born in Ávila at the same time as the great Tomás Luis de Victoria whose stunning brilliance unfairly monopolised the attention of the musical world.
Vivanco served as maestro at the cathedrals of Lérida, Segovia, Ávila and finally at Salamanca, at whose university he was appointed Professor of Music in 1603, a post he held until his death. It was at Salamanca that he published his music in three lavish volumes.
In this, the second of their two concerts featuring Vivanco’s music, the men of De Profundis leave behind the darkness of the Requiem and the Holy Week music that was the focus for their first concert. Now they turn to Vivanco’s more exuberant and outgoing side. The mass Assumpsit Jesus is based on one of his own motets and is written for five voices, expanding in parts to seven voices. As well as some heartfelt and radiant motets, the choir will also give what is possibly the first modern performance of the brilliant Magnificat primi toni.
Robert Hollingworth is the founder-director of I Fagiolini, an award-winning group renowned for its innovative staged productions of vocal music from the Renaissance to the present day. He combines running the group with teaching at the University of York, where he is a Reader in Music. There he runs The 24 and the world's only full-time Masters in Solo voice ensemble singing.