Robert White (±1538-1574): Magnificat

When Morley, was writing his A Plaine and Easie Introduction to Practicall Musicke (1597) he listed White as one of the greatest English composers saying that he was equal to de Lassus and included him in a list of seven eminent Tudor composers that included "Fayrfax, Taverner, Sheppard, Whyte, Parsons and Mr Byrd." Whenever I…

Jean Lhéritier (±1480—±1552): Magnificat

The first public performance in modern times of Jean L’Heritier’s Magnificat. Recorded live at the St. John Nepomucene Chapel at Sarny Castle, Aug 29, 2015. Performed by Men’s Vocal Ensemble Gregorianum, conducted by Berenika Jozajtis. This is a rarity amongst Lhéritier ‘s surviving works most of which arecomparatively short motets. Rarity or not like all…

Robert Fayrfax (1464-1521): Magnificat Regale

Shortly after he was crowned Henry VIII made clear that Fayrfax stood high in his favour by awarding him the sum of £9 2/6 (nine pounds two shillings and six pence) to be paid on top of Fayrfax’s salary from the Chapel Royal. We don’t know when Fayrfax composed this setting of the Magnificat to…

William Mundy (±1529-1591): Evening Canticles

Mundy is one of those Tudor composers about whom we know almost nothing. His career spanned the entirety of the English reformation, the Henrician overthrow of the Catholic church, the Edwardian intensification of reform, the Marian reaction, and Elizabeth II’s re-entrenchment of the Anglican church, Mundy saw them all. His contemporaries thought very well of…

O Sapientia: Great Antiphon for 17 December 2015

The anti­phon, for 17 De­cemb­er, O Sapien­ta (‘O Wis­dom’) is based upon Isaiah 11:2-3, and Isaiah 28:29.  As I mentioned in my introductory posting introducing the antiphons framed the performance of the Magnificat during Vespers, in the performance you can hear below the singers have done precisely this – sung first the antiphon and then…

David Bevan (b1951): Magnificat quarti toni

David Bevan was born in 1951 as a schoolboy he was educated at Westminster Cathedral Choir School and Downside. He won an open scholarship to The Queen’s College, Oxford, and has held various teaching posts , including Assistant Master of Music at Westminster Cathedral, and has been Director of Music at the Church of Our…

My cup runneth over

There’s been a glut of excellent music performed live from YouTube channels that I follow in the last fortnight.  One of those channels is The Choir of Somerville College, Oxford’s channel who uploaded this performance of Wood’s Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis in D given at Washington National Cathedral on July 1st 2014,  and Tallis’ If…