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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67539
Recording details: May 2005
Temple Church, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Jeremy Summerly
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: March 2006
Total duration: 4 minutes 18 seconds

'Whether chant-inspired, leaning towards a jazz idiom or chromaticism, the music is an unusual hybrid. The Holst Singers are eloquent and beguiling under the thoughtful direction of Stephen Layton' (Choir & Organ)

'The Holst Singers create great clouds of texture, which surge, form, and melt before your ears … for a bag of musical bonbons à la violette, this disc can't be beaten' (BBC Music Magazine)

'The Holst Singers—Stephen Layton's 'other' great choir—is every bit as skilled, sonorous and sensitive as his better-known group, Polyphony. Very few conductors manage this sort of exquisite phrasing, subtle nuance, gleaming sound, and absolute control that you hear from any of Layton's choirs. Hyperion records them beautifully and offers its usual complete and classy booklet' (American Record Guide)

'This is simply gorgeous music which has not so much moments of sublime beauty as virtually no passages which aren't, both singly and cumulatively, utterly enchanting' (International Record Review)

'Shades of Messiaen, Duruflé, Gregorian chant and jazz tinge Villette's elegant, unpretentious motets, sensitively performed here' (Classic FM Magazine)

'The Holst Singers’ blend, diction, intonation, and ensemble are uniformly up there with the best, as is the engineering of the recording' (Fanfare, USA)

'If I was going to choose a record company to commit Villette's music to disc, then Hyperion would be my first choice and the team invovled in this production do not let composer or musicians down, capturing the mood so well … it is a cracking CD' (Cathedral Music)

'This recording offers the most comprehensive compilation of Villette's choral music in print. Layton's interpretation skillfully supports the composer's intent, especially in terms of text-music relationships. The Holst Singers' diversity of tone color, pristine intonation, exploration of dynamic range, and nuances of rhythmic flexibility are consistently excellent … Layton's balance of every tone in the twenty-part texture achieves an outstanding sonority, a highlight of the recording … I recommend this recording enthusiastically and without reservation' (Choral Guide)

O magnum misterium, Op 53
composer
1983
author of text
Responsories at Matins, Christmas Day

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