International choir #2: ensemble cantissimo based in Switzerland and Germany...
...sings Arne Mellnäs' Sweet Spring
The second choir to send us a greeting from the choral world is the ensemble cantissimo (yes, they spell their name in lowercase), a professional chamber choir based in Zürich, Swiitzerland and Konstanz, Germany. At the Yale International Choral Festival in 2018, the ensemble cantissimo performed Sweet Spring by Arne Mellnäs (1933–2002), an a cappella song cycle in three parts with birdsong, poetry and a touch of modernism.
Arne Mellnäs (1933-2012)
I. Sweet Spring, text Thomas Nashe (1567–1601)
II. Elegiac Sonnet (written at the close of spring), text Charlotte Smith (1749–1806)
III. O the sun, text e e cummings (1894–1962)
SATB divisi, a cappella
Durara 9 minutes
All three parts of Sweet spring from the performance in Yale can be seen at the Youtube channel of the ensemble cantissimo.
das ensemble cantissimo
ensemble cantissimo's founder and Artistic Director Markus Utz is one of the many talented conductors who have studied choral conducting in Sweden, experiencing the "Swedish choral miracle" from the inside. He has brought his love for Swedish music to Zürich, where he is now the head choral conducting professor at the University of the Arts.
From the ensemble cantissimo's webpage:
"ensemble cantissimo, founded in 1994, is one of the most sought-after vocal ensembles in German-speaking countries. The name “cantissimo“ says it all: a concentration on a cappella singing, the highest discipline of choral music. A special emphasis is also put on discovering and rediscovering the works of forgotten (and new) composers. With their characteristic style of interpretation and exciting program selections, the German and Swiss singers under the direction of their founder Markus Utz delight critics and audiences alike."