Hyperion Records

Our joyful'st feast
2008; commissioned by the Helsinki Chamber Choir and Nils Schweckendiek
author of text
When icicles hang: Love's Labour's Lost V:2; Some say that ever: Hamlet I:1
author of text
So, now is come our joyful'st feast, from A Christmas Caroll

'Rautavaara: Choral Music' (CDA67787)
Rautavaara: Choral Music
Buy by post £10.50 CDA67787 

Our joyful'st feast
Before Our joyful’st feast (2008), a recent addition to his catalogue, Rautavaara had written two Christmas hymns, both of them arrangements separated from their original context: Joulun virsi (‘Christmas hymn’), a brief partsong, was originally the final song of the solo song cycle Pyhiä päiviä (‘Holy days’, 1953); Marjatan jouluvirsi (‘Marjatta’s Christmas hymn’) was originally the final song of the mystery play Marjatta matala neiti (‘Marjatta, lowly maiden’), a setting of the Nativity as told in a folk tale in the Finnish national epic, written for the Tapiola Choir in 1975.

Rautavaara wrote in his programme notes: ‘When the Helsinki Chamber Choir and Nils Schweckendiek wished to commission me to write a choral work to be performed at the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) Christmas concert, I decided to set texts from two English Renaissance poets: two extracts from Shakespeare’s plays and a section from an extensive Christmas poem by his contemporary George Wither. These have a robust Renaissance joyfulness which I feel suits a European Christmas, even five hundred years later.’

from notes by Jaakko Mäntyjärvi © 2010

Track-specific metadata
Details for CDA67787 track 14
Recording date
17 March 2009
Recording venue
Exeter College Chapel, Oxford, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Adrian Peacock
Recording engineer
Andrew Mellor
Hyperion usage
  1. Rautavaara: Choral Music (CDA67787)
    Disc 1 Track 14
    Release date: January 2010
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