About the recording
An inseparable, one even say characteristic element of the musical language of Zelenka and Tůma, two most prominent composers of the Czech Baroque, is the perfect mastery of the counterpoint, which, in addition to progressive trends of the Baroque, also lived under the name stile antico. Zelenka, Tůma, and their virtually unknown contemporary J. G. Orschler all learned this skill in Vienna from the Kappelmeister Johann Joseph Fux (1660-1741). All three composers had strong links with Prague, and although they mostly found employment outside the Czech Lands, their music was performed and highly valued in Prague. Zelenka’s compositions in stile antico represent a lesser-known but nonetheless highly interesting part of his work. Tůma’s Stabat Mater is a masterful transformation of the “old craft” into a new, pre-classical style. This CD by Collegium 1704 features several modern world-premiere recordings and opens a fascinating vista into these half-forgotten works of Czech Baroque masters.