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Track(s) taken from CDA67643

The Preces and Responses

1964; for Dennis Townhill and the choir of St Mary's Episcopal Cathedral, Edinburgh
author of text

Westminster Abbey Choir, James O'Donnell (conductor)
Recording details: February 2007
Westminster Abbey, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Jeremy Summerly
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: September 2007
Total duration: 7 minutes 50 seconds


'The disc is a splendid and colourful addition to the Abbey Choir's recordings of special services. They themselves are in fine form, sovereign (as befits the status of their church) in musical confidence, as well placed as the bright-toned voices of the boys who rise with an aplomb many opera house choruses might envy to the high Cs of the Langlais Mass, and show their mastery in still more wonderful ways by finding the notes scattered with hide-and-seek devilry in Tippet's Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis. And in that connection the soloist Nicholas Trapp deserves particular mention. Their style, under James O'Donnell's sure direction, is forthright and spirited, well attuned to the Jacobean mysticism of Dering's Factus est silentium as to Howell's ecstatic Sequence for St Michael … Kenneth Leighton's Responses are subtly varied and inventive' (Gramophone)

'The choir, atmospherically recorded in the Abbey itself, sings this demanding repertoire with its customary zeal and a well-blended sound, and the performances are directed with the panache and style one has come to expect from James O'Donnell. Robert Quinney's contribution as organist culminates in a Laus Deo from Jonathan Harvey aptly described by O'Donnell in his booklet note as 'the opulent psychedelia of [Messiaen's] Turangalîla compressed into four minutes'' (The Daily Telegraph)
The Preces and Responses are by Kenneth Leighton, who spent much of his working life as lecturer and, later, Professor of Music at the University of Edinburgh. Leighton composed much excellent choral music for the Anglican liturgy. His style combines astringent harmonic language with taut rhythms. Most importantly, he has a sure instinct for liturgical scale and practicality. These responses have gained a firm place in the repertory of many choirs, and include a particularly fine and expressive setting of The Lord’s Prayer.

from notes by James O'Donnell © 2007

Les Preces et les Responses sont de Kenneth Leighton, qui fut, durant une grande partie de sa vie, assistant puis professeur de musique à l’université d’Édimbourg. Il composa beaucoup d’excellentes pièces chorales pour la liturgie anglicane, dans un style mêlant langage harmonique acerbe et rythmes tendus. Surtout, il possède un solide instinct de la dimension liturgique et des détails pratiques. Ces répons, qui figurent désormais en bonne place au répertoire de nombreux chœurs, renferment un Notre-Père particulièrement beau et expressif.

extrait des notes rédigées par James O'Donnell © 2007
Français: Hyperion Records Ltd

Die Preces und Responses (Responsorien) sind von Kenneth Leighton, der einen großen Teil seines Arbeitslebens zunächst als Dozent und später als Professor für Musik an der Universität von Edinburg verbrachte. Leighton komponierte viel ausgezeichnete Chormusik für die anglikanische Liturgie. Sein Stil kombiniert eine herbe harmonische Sprache mit straffen Rhythmen. Aber besonders wichtig ist, dass er einen sicheren Instinkt für den liturgischen Kontext und Praktikalität besitzt. Diese Responsorien haben sich einen festen Platz im Repertoire vieler Chöre erobert und enthalten eine besonders schöne, ausdrucksstarke Vertonung des Vaterunsers.

aus dem Begleittext von James O'Donnell © 2007
Deutsch: Renate Wendel

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