On October 13, Cappella Records is proud to present its 31st release: ARVO PÄRT: ODES OF REPENTANCE, performed by Cappella Romana and led by founder and music director Alexander Lingas, Ph.D.
Cappella Romana has prioritized Arvo Pärt’s music for over thirty years. It gave the first US performance of Pärt’s Passio by a US ensemble in 1993 directed by Paul Hillier, with national broadcast on NPR. Cappella Romana has continued to perform Pärt’s music to the present day, including the program on this recording in British Columbia in 2009 and at Cappella Romana’s week-long, sold-out Arvo Pärt Festival in 2017.
This recording is distinct from others of Pärt’s music, presenting a selection of his Orthodox works as a prayer service of repentance. In the Orthodox sense, repentance is not principally personal sorrow, but rather a change of mind, a change of direction in one’s life. This positive outlook is expressed here through the singing of three odes from Pärt’s monumental Kanon Pokajanen (Kanon of Repentance), the kanon being an ancient Byzantine poetic form. A Gospel “reading” marks the center of the service (Pärt’s The Woman with the Alabaster Box) completed by Triodion and one of his Two Slavonic Psalms. Pärt’s transcendent “Prayer after the Kanon” eventually gives way to silence, to the prayer of the heart.
Cappella Romana features some of the best professional choral singers in the country, including Glenn Miller, America’s most prominent basso profundo.
Cappella Romana presents works from this recording in performances in Seattle and Portland September 29–October 1, 2023 alongside the North America premiere of Vespers by Estonian- Ukrainian composer Galina Grigorjeva.