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Track(s) taken from CDA67219

A child's prayer

author of text

Westminster Cathedral Choir, Martin Baker (conductor)
Recording details: July 2000
Westminster Cathedral, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Antony Howell & Julian Millard
Release date: April 2001
Total duration: 3 minutes 42 seconds

Cover artwork: Photograph by Dorothy Burrows.
E & E Picture Library

Other recordings available for download

Gabrieli Consort, Paul McCreesh (conductor)


'Powerful liturgical music from one of today's most admired composers, performed with passionate intensity … performances throughout are exceptionally fine and the recorded sound radiantly atmospheric' (Gramophone)

'A sublime disc' (BBC Music Magazine)

'A striking issue well worth the investment of all interested in recent choral literature' (American Record Guide)

'It is hard to think of any recent music that conveys religious ecstasy as intensely as James MacMillan's Mass … music of high voltage from first to last … the singing of Westminster Cathedral Choir is electrifying' (The Guardian)

'This music, the Mass in particular, is virtually guaranteed a passage into the central repertoire of choirs around the world; it could hardly have had a better springboard than this recording' (International Record Review)

'A busy railway carriage is probably not the ideal environment in which to listen to James MacMillan’s music. But the fact that it transported me to another place is proof of the power of his (Classic FM Magazine)

'Long life to James MacMillan and a plentiful supply of pens and ink' (Fanfare, USA)

'Anyone familiar with the ambience of Westminster Cathedral from the sound of the choir and organ to the pungent scents of wax polish and incense will feel at home immediately and it is difficult to imagine this music sounding as good in any other place. Highly recommended, these performances of this powerful music will repay concentrated listening and repetition' (Organists' Review)

'Outstanding performances. Gaudeamus in loci pace is a breath-catching bonus' (HMV Choice)

'A programme of exceptional quality and interest, which no genuine lover of cathedral music should ignore' (Cathedral Music)

'From the moment this CD begins, the senses tingle with the magical, spiritual nature of the music' (Sunday Herald, Scotland)
Dedicated to the dead of the Dunblane tragedy of March 1996, A Child’s Prayer was first performed in Westminster Abbey the following July. The setting is the more poignant for the scoring of two solo treble parts throughout, which are accompanied by slow-moving chords sung by the remainder of the choir. Despite the tragic circumstances of the time, much is made of the word ‘joy’ which builds to such an intense climax that there is inevitably a lingering feeling of optimism and peace.

from notes by James Whitbourn © 2001

Dédiée aux enfants tués dans la tragédie de Dunblane en mars 1996, quand un forcené ouvrit le feu sur une classe primaire de cette petite localité d’Ecosse, A Child’s Prayer reçut sa première audition à l’Abbaye de Westminster le juillet de cette année-là lentement chantés par le reste du chœur. Malgré les tragiques circonstances de l’époque, une attention particulière est portée au mot «joy» qui parvient à un apogée tellement intense que se fait jour un sentiment ténu d’optimiste et de paix.

extrait des notes rédigées par James Whitbourn © 2001
Français: Isabelle Battioni

Das Stück A Child’s Prayer, das den Toten der Tragödie von Dunblane im März 1996 gewidmet ist (als Thomas Hamilton schwerbewaffnet in eine Grundschule des schottischen Orts eindrang und sechzehn Kinder sowie eine Lehrerin erschoß), wurde im Juli des folgenden Jahres in der Abtei von Westminster uraufgeführt. Die Vertonung ist umso ergreifender, als sie im gesamten Verlauf zwei Solodiskantstimmen verwendet, die von langsam fortschreitenden Akkorden des übrigen Chors begleitet werden. Trotz der damaligen tragischen Umstände wird das Wort „joy“ (Freude) in den Vordergrund gerückt: Es baut zu einem derart eindringlichen Höhepunkt auf, daß sie unausweichlich ein anhaltendes Gefühl von Optimismus und Seelenfrieden einstellt.

aus dem Begleittext von James Whitbourn © 2001
Deutsch: Anne Steeb/Bernd Müller

Other albums featuring this work

A Song of Farewell
Studio Master: SIGCD281Download onlyStudio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
HYP41Super-budget price sampler
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