C. V. Stanford (1852 – 1924): Service in B flat, Op 10 – Magnificat, ‘My soul doth magnify the Lord’

Standford Sketch 150x200 Stanford composed his Service in B flat, Op 10, in 1879 during his time as Organist at Trinity College, Cambridge, it’s a pioneering piece of music in which Stanford did something quite new to English choral music at the time which was to apply Brahmsian symphonic technique to sacred choral music thereby giving it a cohesiveness and interest that make it stand out from  the run-of-the-mill choral music which was the staple of contemporaneous English church music. It’s sung below by the Westminster Abbey Choir, conducted by James O’Donnell. Enjoy :-).


Text: Magnificat

My soul doth magnify the Lord: and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.
For he hath regarded: the lowliness of his hand-maiden.
For behold, from henceforth: all generations shall call me blessed.
For he that is mighty hath magnified me: and holy is his Name.
And his mercy is on them that fear him: throughout all generations.
He hath shewed strength with his arm: he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
He hath put down the mighty from their seat: and hath exalted the humble and meek.
He hath filled the hungry with good things: and the rich he hath sent empty away.
He remembering his mercy hath holpen his servant Israel: as he promised to our forefathers,
Abraham and his seed for ever.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son: and to the Holy Ghost;
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be: world without end. Amen.

Luke 1: 46-55

One thought on “C. V. Stanford (1852 – 1924): Service in B flat, Op 10 – Magnificat, ‘My soul doth magnify the Lord’

  1. I love this hymn because its a true life story of Mary the the mother of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour of the whole world. Mary was favoured in her youthful age by God. This hymn lift my spirit high because I know that before this year ends, God will also favour me, because am a woman like Mary.

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