Hyperion Records

Benedictus Deus
2009; SATB unaccompanied; composed for the installation of Vincent Nichols as Archbishop of Westminster on 21 May 2009; dedicated to Martin Baker
author of text
Antiphon at the Installation of an Archbishop

'MacMillan: Tenebrae Responsories & other choral works' (CDA67970)
MacMillan: Tenebrae Responsories & other choral works
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Benedictus Deus
Benedictus Deus was composed for the same enthronement service as Summae Trinitati, that of the Most Reverend Vincent Nichols as Archbishop of Westminster in May 2009, and sets the appropriate Antiphon at the Installation of an Archbishop. An extensively contrapuntal work featuring MacMillan’s trademark ornamental lines, there is an impressively contrasting chordal section at the point where the choir sings ‘Blessed be he who has appointed you to rule on the Archbishop’s throne’, complete with quasi-Coronation harmony and a Monteverdi-like sweep upwards at the end of the phrase. At the image of ‘long years (of glory) in this life’ MacMillan writes such a lengthy series of falling phrases that were this piece not for such a solemn occasion one might imagine a subtle sense of humour at work.

from notes by Paul Spicer © 2013

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