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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA66123
Recording details: January 1984
Chichester Cathedral, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Antony Howell
Release date: April 1987
Total duration: 9 minutes 27 seconds

Short Mass
composer
1965
author of text
Ordinary of the Mass

Kyrie  [1'36]
Sanctus  [1'25]
Benedictus  [1'22]
Agnus Dei  [2'26]

Other recordings available for download
Wells Cathedral Choir, Matthew Owens (conductor)
Introduction
At Wishart’s suggestion, Burgon composed his first choral piece in 1964. Three Elegies was taken up by the BBC Chorus. This short unaccompanied work paved the way for a series of choral compositions bridging a four-decade span. Not long after the premiere of Three Elegies, Burgon’s friend David Gedge asked for a simple Mass setting for use by his choir at Brecon Cathedral. The Short Mass, completed in July 1965, captures something of the unaffected devotional spirit of Britten’s Missa brevis.

Burgon’s syllabic setting of the Latin Mass text, the work’s use of concordant harmonies and its largely homophonic texture were in tune with ideals established for church music during the Second Vatican Council and comparable trends within the Anglican Church during the early 1960s. The brief embellishments and alternating paired voice parts in the Agnus Dei, however, echo a long-distant English choral technique regularly employed in the late fifteenth century. The young composer here balances the demands of changing liturgical practices with the legacy of tradition, a neat achievement for a creative artist who later avowed a deep dislike for organized religion. His writing, especially in the brief yet highly charged Benedictus, manages to sound both timeless and strikingly modern, a condition common to much of Burgon’s substantial output of music for choir.

from notes by Andrew Stewart 2006


Other albums featuring this work
'Burgon: Choral Music' (CDH55421)
Burgon: Choral Music
MP3 £4.99FLAC £4.99ALAC £4.99Buy by post £5.50 CDH55421  Helios (Hyperion's budget label)  

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