Hyperion Records

The Three Kings
First line:
O balow, balow la lay. The first king was very young
composer
commissioned by King's College, Cambridge, for the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols, Christmas Eve 2000
author of text
The Three Kings

Recordings
'A Christmas Caroll from Westminster Abbey' (CDA67716)
A Christmas Caroll from Westminster Abbey
Buy by post £10.50 CDA67716 
'Dove: Choral Music' (CDA67768)
Dove: Choral Music
Buy by post £10.50 CDA67768 
Details

The Three Kings
EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Jonathan Dove’s The Three Kings, a setting of Dorothy L Sayers, was commissioned for the 2000 Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols. Sayers’s division of the kings into three ages, with a stanza each—young, middle and old respectively—gives the piece its structure; the melancholic mood is immediately established by the beautifully simple lullaby refrain. Dove achieves a magical transformation at the start of the third stanza, by unexpectedly switching to the major mode. He then expands the scoring at ‘many a gaud and glittering toy’, the inner voices providing a sparkling pointillistic accompaniment to the slower-moving melody. An ecstatic climax is reached; but this subsides into a wistful repeat of the opening refrain, leaving a question-mark hanging over the scene.

from notes by Robert Quinney © 2008

Track-specific metadata
Click track numbers opposite to select

Details for CDA67768 track 9
Artists
ISRC
GB-AJY-10-76809
Duration
4'54
Recording date
25 June 2009
Recording venue
Wells Cathedral, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Mark Brown
Recording engineer
Julian Millard
Hyperion usage
  1. Dove: Choral Music (CDA67768)
    Disc 1 Track 9
    Release date: September 2010
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