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Hyperion Records

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A Lake Landscape at Sunset by John Atkinson Grimshaw (1836-1893)
Christie's, London / Bridgeman Art Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDH55456
Recording details: June 2004
Wells Cathedral, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: June 2005
Total duration: 17 minutes 21 seconds

'The phrasing of Malcolm Archer's Wells Cathedral Choir is unobtrusively intelligent, Howells' long, powerfully expanding crescendos emerging as naturally evolving arcs in the ongoing argument. Tonal blend is excellent, and there is no superficial straining for effect whatsoever. This is genuinely devotional singing, technique placed at the disposal of the music's spiritual message. Rupert Gough's organ accompaniments are exemplary' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Rupert Gough's accompaniments are tastefully executed and help make this portrait of the range and diversity of a side to Howells all too often taken for granted a highly worthwhile release' (International Record Review)

'The sound is focused and radiant, the ensemble immaculate, and Rupert Gough provides charismatic organ accompaniment' (The Scotsman)

St George's Windsor Service
composer
1952
author of text
Book of Common Prayer

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
One of the unfortunate effects of the great liturgical reforms which have taken place in the Church of England over the last thirty years has been the almost complete disappearance of choral matins. This has meant that a large part of the repertoire has become forgotten through disuse. Howells wrote a number of settings of the Te Deum, Jubilate and Benedictus of which the Collegium Regale settings are by far the most well known. This is a shame, for as with Howells’s choral output as a whole, conductors tend to stick to familiar repertoire and ignore the riches which exist in other, less well known works. The Te Deum and Benedictus written in 1952 for St George’s Chapel, Windsor, are just such examples of outstanding settings of these great words which are almost completely neglected.

from notes by Paul Spicer © 2005

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