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Hyperion Records

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Portrait of Elizabeth I.
The Deanery, Westminster Abbey / Copyright © Dean and Chapter of Westminster
Track(s) taken from CDA67704
Recording details: June 2008
All Hallows, Gospel Oak, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Jeremy Summerly
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: October 2008
Total duration: 8 minutes 53 seconds

'The beauties of this disc of 16th century choral music are many and various. The repertoire's selection and arrangement is inspired, the singing some of the best I've heard on CD … as a showcase for English choral singing at its most charismatic, this deserves to be widely heard' (Gramophone)

'The Choir of Westminster Abbey sings fresh, committed and emotionally compelling accounts. Many overpowering moments take place during Mundy's Vox Patris Caelestis … James O'Donnell shapes vocal lines with a keen sense of drama … the brilliance of the programming matches that of the singing' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Sheppard's sublime Libera nos unfolds like a hothouse flower amid other blooms from Tye, Tallis, Mundy and White' (The Observer)

'This latest addition to Hyperion's excellent Westminster Abbey series presents a fascinating snapshot of the musical upheavals created by Queen Mary's death and Elizabeth I's accession in 1558. Sheppard's Second Evening Service, composed in that year in a syllabic yet sonorously polyphonic style, marks the watershed between richly textured and highly elaborated Latin pieces, such as Mundy's Vox Patris caelestis, and the beautiful simplicity of Byrd's Teach me, O Lord. Recusant musical activity is also represented by Byrd's profoundly moving Ne irascaris' (The Daily Telegraph)

'The energy in the boys' voices is thrilling: they sear through the complex texture with evangelical zeal … this recording showcases the contrasts of style which made the 16th century such a fertile period of composition, and shows how the tradition of singing services at Westminster Abbey has continued unbroken for so many centuries' (Early Music Review)

'This is spectacularly fine singing, with James O'Donnell's obvious affection for the repertoire drawing from both boys and men some exquisite performances … the Westminster choir's most beautiful release to date' (International Record Review)

'In this brilliantly conceived programme … O'Donnell's superlative choir are peerless' (The Sunday Times)

Ne irascaris, Domine
composer
Liber primus sacrarum cantionum (1589)
author of text
Isaiah 64: 9-10

Other recordings available for download
The Tallis Scholars, Peter Phillips (conductor)
The Hilliard Ensemble
Gallicantus, Gabriel Crouch (conductor)
Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Published in his 1589 Cantiones Sacrae, this double motet is one of Byrd’s masterpieces and must surely be one of his most forceful utterances inspired by the fate of the Catholic church in England. The emphasis laid on the word ‘desolata’ after the sad echoings of ‘Ierusalem’, and the chordal enunciations of ‘Sion deserta facta est’ invite comparison with The Lamentations of Tallis.

from notes by Paul Hillier © 1990


Other albums featuring this work
'Byrd & Monte: The Word Unspoken' (SIGCD295)
Byrd & Monte: The Word Unspoken
MP3 £7.99FLAC £7.99ALAC £7.99 SIGCD295  Download only  
'Byrd: Playing Elizabeth's Tune' (CDGIM992)
Byrd: Playing Elizabeth's Tune
MP3 £7.99FLAC £7.99ALAC £7.99Buy by post £11.75 Studio Master: FLAC 24-bit 48 kHz £12.00ALAC 24-bit 48 kHz £12.00 CDGIM992  Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
'Byrd: The Tallis Scholars sing William Byrd' (CDGIM208)
Byrd: The Tallis Scholars sing William Byrd
MP3 £7.99FLAC £7.99ALAC £7.99Buy by post £11.75 CDGIM208  2CDs for the price of 1  
'Exultate Deo' (CDA66850)
Exultate Deo
'Libera nos - The cry of the oppressed' (SIGCD338)
Libera nos - The cry of the oppressed
MP3 £7.99FLAC £7.99ALAC £7.99 Studio Master: FLAC 24-bit 44.1 kHz £9.00ALAC 24-bit 44.1 kHz £9.00 SIGCD338  Download only   Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
'Sacred & Secular Music' (CDH55148)
Sacred & Secular Music
MP3 £4.99FLAC £4.99ALAC £4.99Buy by post £5.50 CDH55148  Helios (Hyperion's budget label)  

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