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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67586
Recording details: February 2006
Westminster Abbey, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Jeremy Summerly
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: September 2006
Total duration: 4 minutes 8 seconds

'Anglican music can be heard at its best from Westminster Abbey … a varied programme stylishly performed' (Choir & Organ)

'Early notice is served of how well the Abbey's choristers are currently singing … an admirably varied programme, with excellent Hyperion recording' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Exhilarating performances' (The Daily Telegraph)

'As with the previous releases in this series, the choir (and organist Robert Quinney, who here ends the disc in spectacular fashion with Jeanne Demessieux's Te Deum), under the fluent direction of James O'Donnell, is above reproach' (International Record Review)

'After eight years James O'Donnell has brought a new sound to the choir of Westminster Abbey. The boys show the greater improvement, a firmer, more solid tone, but the men also now sound like the best adult choirs … the acoustics of the Gothic building are superb, and the organ makes magnificent sounds' (Fanfare, USA)

'The range of musical styles is as varied as could be … the standard of singing and recording is fully equal to such demanding music, but it is equally satisfying to hear psalms and familiar canticles, Stanford in C (Morning) and Purcell in G minor (Evening) performed with such loving care. An excellent disc, highly recommended' (Cathedral Music)

Laudes Regiae
First line:
Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat
composer
author of text

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The Office of Matins begins with the plainsong Laudes Regiae, or Royal acclamations, sung on great and joyful occasions (such as coronations) since the time of the Emperor Charlemagne (742–814). It is likely that a version of the Laudes Regiae was sung at Edward’s Coronation in Winchester Cathedral. The Laudes were adapted for the context of their use, and the saints invoked specially chosen for the circumstances of the performance. This present-day version is based on the famous medieval English source from Worcester Cathedral. It begins by invoking the intercession of the saints associated with Westminster Abbey (including, of course, St Edward) for the Queen, and then goes on to acclaim Christ as King. With its powerful litany-like momentum and tuneful character it is not hard to see why this has become one of the most celebrated plainsong melodies.

from notes by James O'Donnell © 2006

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