We have the concept of globalization associated with the 20th century, but without much exaggeration we can apply it to the Jesuit missions in South America in the 17th and 18th centuries. The Jesuits were aware of the power of music, which profoundly touches the human heart. The European music they brought across the ocean was in no time embraced by the indigenous peoples in Bolivia and Peru. And thus works by the Czech composer Josef Brentner, the Italian Jesuit Domenico Zipoli or the Swiss missionary Martin Schmid were soon performed in the settlements in the middle of the jungle and in the mountains. European music blended with the traditional local music, just as the Quechua language blended with Spanish. Through music and singing they praised God and prayed to the Virgin Mary, as we can hear in the Quechua procession hymn Hanaq pachap cussicuinin or Zipoli’s Zuipaqui. However, similarly vivid instrumental music, songs and dances were enjoyed in Moravia, in the very heart of Europe. And again the globalisation in music: many a folk song and dance was imbued with elements of “high culture”, and vice versa, G. P. Telemann did not hide enthusiasm and direct inspiration from Silesian and Haná folk music in his work. And songs worshipping the Mother of God were sung in spectacular churches, village chapels and fields alike. Yet whether European music was performed in the jungle or Haná melodies in Hamburg, the common denominator was enthusiastic musicians who knew no greater delight than getting together and playing. Just like Collegium Marianum on this recording. Let us rejoice together!
The unbridled joy of music. In Bolivia, Peru, Moravia. In the Baroque era and today alike.