World Music  Mittelalter
Estampie Best Of Estampie GMC021 CD
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FormatAudio CD
Ordering NumberGMC021
labelGalileo MC
Release date07/05/2007

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      20 th Anniversary of Estampie

      When a period of creativity lasts for such a long time, it cannot proceed like a smoothly flowing stream, but takes many a turn, as time goes by - due to various influences upon the creative activity of the ensemble. Over the years, the musicians themselves and their artistic views have changed as well as the general attitude towards medieval music within musical life. And of course, the general esteem of music within society is also playing an important role. Enjoy this little retrospective and let me sketch out these 20 years of Estampie in five different phases:

      The Early Phase / Beginnings

      Inspired by our studies with Nikolaus Harnoncourt at Salzburg, we started to explore Medieval Music. Even in the context of Early Music, Medieval Music was of minor importance at that time. Publications were scarce and it was hard to find an adequate artistic approach to musical sources. Music groups like Sequentia or the Hilliard Ensemble were mainly concerned with vocal music and held very strict views about interpretation. As each piece of music was the result of extensive research they were convinced that there was the one and only true interpretation. It was not long before epigons turned up and a so-called „scene“ established itself. They sometimes quarrelled tooth and nail about their contradictory views of performing practice. Estampie never participated in this kind of trench war and preferred to find their own, individual way from the beginning. But nevertheless, the early pieces sound rather conventional, with their cautious instrumentation and being performed rather close to the original text.

      The Second Phase / The Departure

      In the early nineties we set out and tried to take the road less travelled. Ludus Danielis, conceived as theatre performance with kathak dancers, was realized in co-operation with the „Theater der Klänge“ at Düsseldorf. Our conceptional approach here was much more complex than before. We deliberately accepted the risk of neglecting many a „rule“ of historically correct performing practice in favour of a vivid, exciting and captivating interpretation. We earned praise from a responding, growing audience, but occasionally harsh criticism from the „hardliners“, too. „This record is dangerous to your musical health. Boycot this CD!“ was the climax of the crushing critique of an american critic, who had to admit musical quality, but nevertheless sensed profound betrayal of Early Music. In the year 1996 we released Crusaders, featuring Alexander Veljanov as a guest-singer. The ensemble increased from initially 3 members to sometimes even 10 musicians. Combined with modern (sound) recording technology this allowed musical results of a new dimension.

      The Experimental Phase / The Quest

      Materia Mystica stands for a period, when the Middle Ages played but a minor role in our musical work. We spent much time with theatre music and experimented with avant-garde elements and our own compositions. Beside Materia Mystica, which was performed on stage scenically, we were working on our large-scale Hildegard-von-Bingen-Project, Ordo Virtutum, with choir and orchestra. In spite of several attempts, this work was never released on CD. Until today, these experimental pieces, mostly combined with dance or theatre, have always been a crucial part of our artistic activity.

      The Trilogy

      At the turn of the millennium Estampie released the three CDs, Ondas, Fin Amor and Signum. They can be said to be the essence of the ensemble´ s phase of maturity. Our many years of experience are incorporated in these productions. The interpretation of some pieces being very liberal, one can rather speak of new compositions here. Until today these three CDs represent the essential repertoire of our life-concerts. We stuck to their basic conception more or less consistently and they partly have been turned into scenes.

      World Music

      In the year 2004 we started to make a long-cherished wish reality: to incorporate our (medieval) music into a non- European musical project. We started with Marco Polo. In co-operation with musicians from Mongolia, Iran and India we retraced Marco Polo´s journey into the realm of Ghengis Khan with our music. A live-DVD of this project was recorded on the occasion of a concert in Hannover. First night of our latest and current project Al Andaluz was in July 2006 in Landshut on the occasion of the local festival. The focus of this project are the three religions and cultures in medieval Spain. It is performed by Estampie and members of the spanish-arabian ensembles „L´ham de Foc“ and „Aman Aman“. The CD will be released in summer 2007.

      Translation: Birke Bossmann

      Tracklist hide

      CD 1
      • 1.Disse mi05:18
      • 2.Chanterai por mon corage06:14
      • 3.Imperator rex Graecorum05:10
      • 4.Quantos me creveren01:45
      • 5.Palästinalied04:26
      • 6.Bluomenrot03:13
      • 7.Gol (Live-Aufnahme)06:52
      • 8.Estampie V04:22
      • 9.Voi ch´amate05:44
      • 10.Al jorn00:47
      • 11.A voi gente04:52
      • 12.Qui sunt hi /O antiqui sancti /Aer enim volat05:03
      • 13.O Fortuna03:49
      • 14.Fin amor03:10
      • 15.Reis glorios08:13
      • 16.Numquid Dari01:15
      • 17.Heu heu heu03:52
      • 18.Summerwunne05:12
      • Total:01:19:17