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When Augustus Reigned
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1. Kontakion for the Forefeast of Christmas
2. Glory to God in the Highest
3. Today Christ is born...
4. The Magi, Kings of Persia...
5. Today Bethlehem receives Him...
6. The First Ode of the Kanon for Christmas
9. Christ Is Born
10. As many of you as have been baptised
11. As many of you as have been baptised
12. Alleluiarion for Christmas Day
13. Cherubic Hymn
14. Megalynarion for Theophany
15. Communion Verse for Theophany
16. When Augustus Reigned
Founded in 1991, Cappella Romana is a vocal chamber ensemble dedicated to combining passion with scholarship in its exploration of the musical traditions of the Christian West and East, with emphasis on early and contemporary music. When Augustus Reigned is a collection of Byzantine hymns taken from the Christmas and Epiphany services.
Fr. Apostolos Hill
The evolution of Greek Orthodox liturgical choral music is done a tremendous service by this outstanding work of Cappella Romana. Incorporating a synthesis of ancient Roman and Byzantine influences while preserving and embellishing the core melodies of these well-known and beloved hymns, Cappella Romana gives the listener a glimpse of the beauty and majesty of traditional Orthodox music while enabling an uninitiated first-time listener to merely enjoy these hymns for their stunning beauty. Having chanted many of these hymns over the years as a psalti, I still found myself listening to them as if for the first time. The use of space in the recording gives it an airy, almost ethereal quality without in any way inhibiting the music. This is to Byzantine music as Rachmaninoff is to Russian liturgical music, a stirring collection of festal hymns that will quickly become one of your favorites.
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