La Dolce Voce: Voces8 and The Rose Ensemble in Italy

by John Birge, Minnesota Public Radio
February 4, 2010
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St. Paul, Minn. — White sauce vs. tomato sauce.
Meat vs. fish.
Polenta vs. pasta.

Northern and southern Italy still retain distinct differences in cuisine and culture today.

The difference between the music of the two regions was even more pronounced four hundred years ago.

"Voices of Venice and Rome" is a program that explores those differences. It features candlelight performances of Italian Renaissance choral music, sung by The Rose Ensemble, based in Minnesota, and their special guests from London, eight singers who go by the name Voces8.

And while these two ensembles have their own different personalities, when they sing together their sound blends into something weightless and timeless, soaring into space like a cathedral.

Host John Birge talked with Jordan Sramek of The Rose Ensemble, and Barney Smith of Voces8, about what defines each group. They sang music for the Sistine Chapel in Rome, and St. Mark's Cathedral in Venice and they'll sing concerts in the Twin Ports and the Twin Cities February 4-7.

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