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Track(s) taken from CDA67259

Come down, O Love divine

author of text
translator of text

Polyphony, Stephen Layton (conductor)
Recording details: January 2001
All Saints, Tooting, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: May 2001
Total duration: 6 minutes 40 seconds

Other recordings available for download

Elin Manahan Thomas (soprano), The Cambridge Singers, John Rutter (conductor)


'Delicious performances of Rutter’s wonderfully approachable and finely crafted vocal writing. The sound, too, is outstanding … roof-raising performances of a representative programme [of] Rutter’s sacred choral music. The artistry of the 25 full-bodied voices of Polyphony is beyond reproach. Greatly enjoyed and strongly recommended' (Gramophone)

'These vibrant performances amply demonstrate the qualities that give the repertoire its lasting and popular appeal … a concert that will bring widespread comfort and joy' (BBC Music Magazine)

'A triumphantly exuberant performance of the Gloria, which deservedly remains one of John Rutter’s most popular works. ‘Come down, O Love divine’, a lyrical, ardent work … beautifully written and sublimely sung … For those who admire Rutter’s work, this disc, performed as it is in such exemplary fashion, will be a festival' (International Record Review)
Come down, O Love divine (1998), for double choir, has a curious history. It was commissioned by the Musicians Benevolent Fund for their annual St Cecilia’s Day service, a splendid event held (in rotation) in Westminster Abbey, St Paul’s Cathedral, or Westminster Cathedral, with their three choirs joining forces and musicians past and present gathered in a spirit of thanksgiving and celebration. As it turned out, the 1998 service was to be held in Westminster Abbey, which was then in the midst of some rather public unhappiness, the details of which were widely reported at the time and need not be recounted here. I suspect that my choice of texts was influenced by these dramatic events: in particular the invocation ‘Veni, Sancte Spiritus’. Like most musicians, I don’t relish conflict and confrontation, even when they do not involve me personally, yet out of this particular turmoil came a piece which, I think, speaks with a different voice from any of my others.

from notes by John Rutter © 2003

Other albums featuring this work

Rutter: Mass of the Children & other sacred music
COLCD129Download only
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