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de-labyrinthoMusic as a superior language, the quintessence of sound, word, thought and symbol. Music as the sublime expression of the human soul. This is the idea underlying De labyrintho (founded and directed by Walter Testolin), one of the best-known Italian ensembles specialising in Renaissance polyphony and above all a reference point for those who believe that music should adhere to the deep meaning of the text. Their repertoire comprises the music of the great masters of the Franco-Flemish school, together with Palestrina, Gesualdo, Andrea and Giovanni Gabrieli, Lasso, Victoria and many others, but above all, the best-loved musician of them all, Josquin Desprez.
De labyrintho was invited to close the Festival Symposium on Josquin in Middelburg, Holland in 2009 where critics called it «..perhaps the most expert group in the world today at drawing out from Josquin’s notes that sublime, soul-yearning, ultimately Humanist music for which he was compared to Michelangelo and Raffaello». The five records published so far have received world-wide acclaim (Gramophone, the prestigious English review considered their first record «A striking debut») and have won important awards such as The Gramophone Critic’s Choice 2004, the Amadeus Award 2008 as Best Record of the Year for their recording of Lasso and were recommended in the Klaramuziekprijzen 2007 as an emerging group. They have also received other “Record of the Month” and “Recommended” awards on various occasions in specialist reviews worldwide and have been singled out from the very beginning as reference works for Fifteenth and Sixteenth-century repertoire.
In the past year De labyrintho’s musical experience has been enriched by performing Claudio Monteverdi’s Vespro della Beata Vergine in Saint Mark’s basilica in Venice, and by participating to Francesco Leprino’s film Nel nome di B.A.C.H., executing a transcription for six voices by Ruggero Laganà of the Contrapunctus X of J.S. Bach’s Art of Fugue. In some of their programmes, De labyrintho also work with well-known musicians, instrumental ensembles and actors.