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A Maid peerless

published in 1951
author of text

This lovely setting of a medieval poem in praise of the Blessed Virgin Mary has a long history. In its published form it dates from 1951 and was ostensibly written for the National Federation of Music Festival’s competition for choirs that was held as part of the Festival of Britain celebrations. However this was but a revision of an earlier setting for upper voices and small orchestra composed in 1931. There may be a Scottish connection as the manuscript of the earlier version lay undisturbed for many years in the library of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow, but there is no evidence of any performance either north or south of the border. This is another response to a text in which through the lilting grace of its rhythms and the bittersweet richness of its harmony, Howells’ mastery of mood and word-painting is effortlessly demonstrated.

from notes by Paul Andrews © 2008


Howells: I love all beauteous things & other choral and organ music
SIGCD151Download only


Track 18 on SIGCD151 [6'04] Download only

Track-specific metadata for SIGCD151 track 18

Recording date
24 February 2008
Recording venue
St Bartholomew's Church, Dublin, Ireland
Recording producer
Mark Wardell
Recording engineer
Mike Hatch
Hyperion usage
  1. Howells: I love all beauteous things & other choral and organ music (SIGCD151)
    Disc 1 Track 18
    Release date: November 2008
    Download only
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