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Hyperion Records

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Ruins of Holyrood Chapel by Louis J M Daguerre (1787-1851)
The Board of Trustees of the National Museums and Galleries on Merseyside
Track(s) taken from CDH55195
Recording details: February 1991
St Paul's Cathedral, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Antony Howell
Release date: July 1992
Total duration: 12 minutes 0 seconds

'Leighton at his most moving. St Paul's choir brings glowingly alive both the strength and the tenderness of this music. I can enthusiastically recommend this record' (Organists' Review)

The Second Service, Op 62
composer
author of text
Magnificat: Luke 1: 46-55; Nunc dimittis: Luke 2: 29-32

Introduction
The setting of the evening canticles known as The Second Service, Op 62, was commissioned by the Cathedral Organists’ Association and bears the dedication ‘In Memorian Brian Runnett’. Runnett was the talented Organist and Master of the Choristers at Norwich Cathedral and part-time lecturer at the University of East Anglia who was tragically killed in a car accident.

The Magnificat opens with carefully constructed note clusters in compound time which support and answer the treble voices. Repeated rhythmic figures develop in the organ accompaniment which in turn give way to further rhythmic interest. The opening mood returns in the ‘Gloria’ and the music comes to rest quietly but inevitably on a chord of C sharp major.

The vocal parts of the Nunc dimittis begin in a mood reminiscent of the final movement of Crucifixus pro nobis. As in the Magnificat, the opening mood of the Nunc dimittis is re-established in the ‘Gloria’. The dissonances in the final ‘Amen’ yield a chord of F major and the canticles end as gently as they began.

from notes by William McVicker 1992

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