Pamela Dellal, mezzo soprano


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Motet Notes

Heinrich Schütz: "Meine Seele erhebt den Herren," SWV 426

Heinrich Schütz’ Deutsches Magnificat was published in 1657 as part of a collection entitled Twelve Sacred Songs. It is one of three settings he made of this text, Mary’s prayer after her encounter with the angel Gabriel.  It is plain, direct, unspectacular, and extremely subtle in its eloquence, typical of his late style.

The title page indicates that Schütz composed this collection “off duty”, not for his Chapel Royal in Dresden, but for a small “choir in training.” As we know from our frequent performances of his communion song Unser Herr Jesus Christus, in der Nacht, also from the Twelve Sacred Songs, the pieces are certainly still very challenging to perform. 

©John Harbison