Hyperion Records

Quatre motets pour le temps de NoŽl
composer
1952
author of text
Nos 1 & 2: Matins Reponsories for Christmas Day; No 3: Antiphon for the Octave of the Epiphany; No 4: Vespers Antiphon on Christmas Day

Recordings
'A Christmas Caroll from Westminster Abbey' (CDA67716)
A Christmas Caroll from Westminster Abbey
'Poulenc: Gloria & Motets' (CDA67623)
Poulenc: Gloria & Motets
'Poulenc: Mass & Motets' (CDH55448)
Poulenc: Mass & Motets
MP3 £4.99FLAC £4.99ALAC £4.99Buy by post £5.50 CDH55448  Helios (Hyperion's budget label)  
'Christmas through the ages' (NOEL1)
Christmas through the ages
MP3 £4.50FLAC £4.50ALAC £4.50 NOEL1  Super-budget price sampler — Download only  
Details
No 1: O magnum mysterium
No 2: Quem vidistis pastores dicite
No 3: Videntes stellam
No 4: Hodie Christus natus est

Quatre motets pour le temps de NoŽl
These exquisite miniatures paint four colourful scenes from the nativity story. O magnum mysterium is the most profound: slow and (by Poulenc’s standards) harmonically austere, it grows in intensity toward the final repetition of the main text, via an intimate verse in praise of the Virgin. The text of Quem vidistis makes two demands of the shepherds, set in contrasting ways by Poulenc. ‘Who did you see?’ is a cantilène accompanied by searching quaver movement; by contrast, the imperative ‘Speak … and proclaim the birth of Christ’ is a trumpet blast worthy of the annunciatory angels themselves. The crystalline refrain of Videntes stellam evokes a placid and (of course) starlit night, through which the Magi travel with burgeoning excitement; this reaches a rich climax as they enter the stable and present their gifts; outside the star shines on, undisturbed. In the final motet, Hodie Christus natus est, the faithful make their response to the news with unbuttoned exuberance: ‘Gloria in excelsis Deo’ accompanied by popping champagne corks.

from notes by Robert Quinney © 2008

Track-specific metadata
Click track numbers opposite to select

Details for CDA67716 track 2
O magnum mysterium
Artists
ISRC
GB-AJY-08-71602
Duration
3'11
Recording date
15 February 2008
Recording venue
Westminster Abbey, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
David Trendell
Recording engineer
Simon Eadon
Hyperion usage
  1. A Christmas Caroll from Westminster Abbey (CDA67716)
    Disc 1 Track 2
    Release date: October 2008
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