Vittorio Grigòlo - Ave Maria

Uplifting spiritual songs from the former Sistine Chapel chorister. Album of the Week, 4 November 2013.

The celebrated tenor Vittorio Grigòlo started life as a chorister in the Sistine Chapel Choir at the Vatican so, drawing inspiration from this period of his artistic development, he has now brought together what is an intimate collection of sacred music accompanied by the choir itself.

Not surprisingly for an album titled Ave Maria, there are numerous settings of those words - by Catena, Bartolucci, Caccini and Schubert. But there are also more familiar spiritual songs too, such as Franck's Panis Angelicus and the Ingemisco from Verdi's Requiem

Grigolo's rich, honeyed, Italianite voice treats the songs with a high degree of Romantic passion - perhaps a little florid for those who like their sacred music more ethereal - but they are beautifully performed nonetheless.