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Pomponio Nenna - L'ottavo libro di madrigali

Pomponio Nenna - l'ottavo libro

As our major production during the Summer of 2013, Per Passione recorded the Italian Renaissance composer Pomponio Nenna’s (1556 – 1608) Eighth Book of Madrigals for Five Voices, published posthumously in 1618. The project was carried out as part of our ongoing collaboration with German musicologist Mirco Oswald.

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Roll the Credits

The project

In 2011, Per Passione were contacted by musicologist Mirco Oswald at Heidelberg University, who was at the time editing Pomponio Nenna’s eighth book of madrigals as part of an academic dissertation. Two years later, we were ready to begin recording the music that Mirco has put into modern notation, and thus for the first time make these wonderful madrigals and canzonettas available to a modern audience. The recording took place in Lisbjerg Church north of Aarhus (Denmark) and encompassed seven singers – two sopranos, one mezzo, three tenors and a bass – as well as a lutenist.

The composer

Pomponio Nenna was born in Bari, in the Italian province of Puglia, in 1556. As a son of one of the city’s officials he began to receive musical tuition at an early age, and he was merely 18 when he published his first compositions. During the 1590s, Nenna worked at the court of Gesualdo, where he was on good terms with the composer-prince Carlo Gesualdo da Venosa. Nenna dedicated several of his compositions to Gesualdo, and although today there is some debate about whether Nenna functioned as a teacher to Gesualdo, or whether the relationship worked the other way round, there is little doubt that the two composers influenced each other’s work to a substantial degree: indeed, we recognise Gesualdo’s love of chromaticism and imitations in many of Nenna’s compositions. Other important influences of Nenna's seem to have been the composers of the Neapolitan school – especially Giulio Caccini and Andrea Gabrieli.
Read more about the composer at Wikipedia.

The participants

Anna Maria Wierød, soprano
Per Passione are proud to welcome Anna back to our little flock! Anna was the ensemble’s very first soprano and sang with us at our debut concert in 2008. Since then, she has undergone a development that hasn’t gone unnoticed throughout the European environment for Early Music. After studying with Harry van der Kamp at Hochschule für Künste in Bremen, Anna has joined the highly successful Renaissance music group Pantagruel with whom she tours all over Europe. She futhermore sings with several of Northern Europe’s leading choirs and ensembles which focus on Renaissance and Baroque music. During the autumn of 2013, she finished her post-graduate (‘soloist’) studies at Det Jyske Musikkonservatorium in Aarhus – and commenced her post-grduate studies in ensemble singing at Schola Cantorum Basiliensis.

Anna Maria Wierød
Katrine Dyrehauge Roos, soprano
We’ve all been looking forward to this our first collaboration with Katrine. Katrine obtained her degree in singing, specialising in Early Music and church music, from Det Fynske Musikkonservatorium. She regularly performs with several ensembles committed to historical performance practice. Her own duo, Duo Suonante, which she formed together with guitarist Lars Hedelius Strikkertsen in 2012, specialises in the repertoire of the 19th Century. Katrine also frequently works as an ensemble singer; not least with Det Jyske Vokalensemble, who specialise in the Baroque repertoire.

Katrine Dyrehauge Roos
Charlotte Glavind-Teute, mezzo
Since Per Passione was formed in 2007, our main line-up as been S-S-A-T-B, and Charlotte’s function (she’s a mezzo) has thus regularly been that of alto: sometimes singing quite deep parts, as this is what much of the early repertoire requires.
Working with Pomponio Nenna’s 8th book of madrigals, we’ve had the pleasure of hearing her work in a higher timbre; often with two (or even three!) tenors and a bass beneath her.
Charlotte has, with her long and continuous experience as a singer in Per Passione, been one of the pillars in the ensemble’s work with the repertoire.

Charlotte Glavind-Teute
Erik K. Knudsen, tenor
Erik’s collaboration with Mirco Oswald around Per Passione’s work with Pomponio Nenna’s 8th book of madrigals laid the foundation for the recording. To Erik, as well as to the rest of the ensemble, one of the greatest challenges has been the familiarisation with music that none of us has had the opportunity to hear before. The inner logic of the music, as well as Nenna’s personal style (he is for example a big fan of textual elisions, which often makes the setting of the text to music quite challenging) have been foreign territory to the ensemble. In his work with the madrigals, Erik has to a large extent made use of his background within musicology. His skills in this area have indeed been invaluable to the ensemble in our work toward making our own interpretations of the music.

Erik Nishimatsu Knudsen
Jakob Pedersen, tenor
Jakob is one of Jutland’s most experienced singers with Early Music as his particular field of interest. He has extensive experience from both choirs and ensembles that focus on the music of the Renaissance and the Baroque. Through his work with Aarhus Barokkor, Det Jyske Vokalensemble and Ensemble Zimmermann he has perfected his style with a basis in historical performance practice. In 2012 he entered the stage in The Old Town in Aarhus in the role as Acis, when Det Jyske Vokalensemble staged Händel’s Acis and Galatea.
We’ve long wanted to collaborate with Jakob in Per Passione, and as such it’s been a special pleasure for us to be able to include him in this project.

Jakob Pedersen
Karsten Sivebæk Jensen, tenor
Per Passione’s audience were introduced to Karsten for the first time in 2011, when the ensemble gave their premiere concert including music for six voices. Karsten was also part of the team acting as soloists when Per Passione in 2012 gave their performances of Mozart’s Requiem with Fortuna-koret in Skive and Aarhus.
Karsten began his singing carrier with Mads Bille in Herning Kirkes Drengekor and through Den Jyske Sangskole he has received instruction in singing throughout a number of years; amongst others from such esteemed teachers as Margrete Enevold and Ikuyo Sato. Karsten is employed at Sct. Pauls Kantori in Aarhus, and is a member of the Vocal Ensemble GAIA.

Karsten Sivebæk Jensen
Jesper Schneidelbach, bass
Jesper has been singing with Per Passione almost all the way since the ensemble was formed back in 2007 and is as such the only one of the singers, apart from Erik, who has performed with us in every single concert and project in which we’ve been involved. During the period of rehearsals that has gone before the recording of Pomponio Nenna’s 8th book of madrigals, Jesper has been one of the three absolute pillars: he, Erik and Charlotte have put in countless extra hours to make this recording take place. As such, we’ve only seen him do what he always does: Jesper, our bass, is ever the solid rock upon which all other singers can rely.

Jesper Schneidelbach
Dohyo Sol, theorbo
Every CD recording that Per Passione has made up until now has been carried out a cappella. In that respect, our cooperation with Dohyo Sol proves the beginning of a new era for the ensemble. Dohyo obtained his degree as a lute-player at Kungliga Musikhögskolan in Stockholm. He has also studied at Koninklijk Conservtorium in den Haag and at Det Kongelige Musikkonservatorium in Copenhagen. He has extensive experience both as a solo- and ensemble player and plays regularly with a number of professional ensembles all over Northern Europe, such as Arte Dei Suonatori, Drottningholm Barockorkester and Göteborgsoperans Orkester. As a soloist, Dohyo is versed in a repertoire that spans from the Renaissance to the 18. Century. He is perhaps best known from his collaboration with Magnus Andersson in the ensemble The Ferrara Lute Duo, with which he won the prestigious Nordic Young Early Music Ensemble award in 2008.

Dohyo Sol
Mirco Oswald, musicologist
It was during his work on a dissertation for his degree at Heidelberg University that Mirco Oswlad decided to contact Per Passione. Why else, he asked, should one make a modern edition of the music: these madrigals were written to be performed! Mirco’s work with the madrigals will, just as Per Passione’s, result in a publication, and since Mirco is of now one of Europe’s most knowledgeable musicologists within the field of ”Nennology”, his notes will be included in the booklet that will accompany Per Passione’s forthcoming CD.

Mirco Oswald
Michael Bruus Jensen, audio engineer
Michael has a degree in musicology from Aarhus University and has extensive experience both as an audio engineer and a studio technician. He has worked within many genres – from classical and jazz to pop/rock, metal and vocal ensembles. Throughout the past few years, he has specialised in sound production with vocal music, and he is the preferred sound engineer to groups such as Postyr Project, Vocal Line and VoxNorth.

Michael Bruus Jensen
Ida Marie Pedersen, manager and producer
Administratively speaking, the project of recording Pomponio Nenna’s 8th book of madrigals is undoubtedly the largest and most complex one that Per Passeione have ever undertaken, and the ensemble’s manager Ida Marie has been busy as never before; writing applications for funds, creating a public image for the project, planning, coordinating and structuring the procedures so that the right people have been able to be at the right place at the right time.

Ida Marie Pedersen

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