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Hyperion Records

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Cornfield by Moonlight (1830) by Samuel Palmer (1805-1881)
Private Collection / Bridgeman Art Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDA67909
Recording details: June 2012
Wells Cathedral, United Kingdom
Produced by Jeremy Summerly
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: August 2013
Total duration: 2 minutes 20 seconds

'This excellent disc from Wells Cathedral Choir looks back over 15 years of Bingham's choral works … there's a frankness to the Wells choral sound that suits music that has nothing precious or twee about it. It creates an underlying muscularity, even in the glowing cluster-chords of Cantate Domino and foregrounds the texts that Bingham sets with Britten-like care … this collection is the most representative yet of the composer's functional, liturgical works' (Gramophone)

'The setting of Cantate Domino memorably commingles an anxious, questing quality with glimpses of certitude and placidity, a balance sensitively struck in this assured Wells Cathedral Choir performance … Our faith is a light is a luminescent setting highlighting the bright, gleaming quality of tone the Wells top line is currently producing. The Hyperion recording is atmospheric and expertly balanced. Recommended' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Choral music is a sphere that welcomes the new. The Anglican (mainly) church is a leading source of new commissions for countless composers, among them Judith Bingham (b1952), who stands out not least because she spent her early career as a professional singer and knows the idiom. She favours rich, multilayered radiance, as heard in the two Wells service canticles—written for the excellent choir who perform here. Jonathan Vaughn provides spirited organ accompaniment and interludes. The lullaby setting of God be in my head, the abundant interpretation of Gerard Manley Hopkins's Harvest and the unexpectedness of the Bromley Missa brevis, written for an enlightened south London parish church, all play to Bingham's creative strengths' (The Observer)

God be in my head
composer
2001; commissioned by Philip Barnes for Holy Communion Episcopal Church in St Louis, Missouri
author of text
Book of Hours, 1514, in English in the Sarum Primer of 1558

Introduction
God be in my head, commissioned by Philip Barnes for Holy Communion Episcopal Church in St Louis, Missouri, presented a challenge to Judith Bingham. The setting by Henry Walford Davies was firmly ensconced in the composer’s head, an abiding legacy of her life as a singer. ‘I got round the problem by using the famous opening five notes of the Walford Davies as the accompaniment to a rocking, lullaby-like setting.’

from notes by Andrew Stewart 2013

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