Welcome to Hyperion Records, an independent British classical label devoted to presenting high-quality recordings of music of all styles and from all periods from the twelfth century to the twenty-first.
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Part I: a brief, solemn introduction, mystical in character, for standard SATB choir. The texture is enriched with divided basses, the lowest of them sustaining a drone on E.
Part II: Keble’s translation of the Phos hilaron hymn, sung by a soloist to a simple chant-like melody supported by hummed chords from the choir.
Part III: the longest and most elaborate section, centred on verses from St Symeon’s ‘Mystic Prayer to the Holy Spirit’. The voices are divided into two groups, sometimes consisting of two equal antiphonal choirs, sometimes of a small semi-chorus pitted against the main choir, and within each group the voices are further divided, creating a rich texture and resplendent sonority. At the words ‘Come, alone to the alone’ the soloist reappears, at first supported by simple chords but then with the semi-chorus floating above, after which the full resources of both choirs come into play again, leading to a tranquil conclusion.
To some, the combination of big, rich, slow chords and drone basses allied to solemn liturgical texts might appear to be an excursion into territory that John Tavener made his own in recent years, but Park speaks with his own distinctive voice, coloured by echoes of a tradition that can enrich our own.
from notes by John Rutter © 2018