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'The Merton Collection' - Dunstaple: Veni Creator; Part: The Woman with the Alabaster Box; Vaughan Williams: Valiant-for-truth / Choir of Merton College

Album Summary

>Esenvalds, Eriks : Magnificat, for alto, chorus, & organ
>Esenvalds, Eriks : Nunc dimittis, for alto, chorus, & organ
>Dunstable, John : Veni Sancte Spiritus, isorhythmic motet for 4 voices, MB 32
>Sheppard, John : Libera nos, salve nos (I), for 7 voices
>Pärt, Arvo : The Woman with the Alabaster Box
>Parry, Charles H. : Songs of Farewell (6) for chorus
>Byrd, William : Praise the Lord, all ye Gentiles, anthem for 6 voices (SSATTB)
>Gibbons, Orlando : This is the record of John
>Berkeley, Lennox : Latin Motets (3), for 5 voices, Op. 83/1
>Purcell, Henry : Hear my prayer, O Lord
>Purcell, Henry : Remember not, Lord, our offences, Z 50
>Vaughan Williams, Ralph : Valiant for Truth, motet for chorus (with piano or organ ad lib)
>Stanford, Charles Villiers : Justorum Animae, motet for chorus, Op. 38/1
>Stanford, Charles Villiers : Beati quorum via, motet for chorus, Op. 38/3
>Mundy, William : Magnificat
>Mundy, William : The secret sins
>Lavino, James : Beati quorum via, for chorus
>Green, Maurice : Lord, Let Me Know Mine End, anthem for chorus
>Gjeilo, Ola : Sacred Origins, for chorus & organ
Performers Conductors Ensembles Composers

Notes & Reviews:

In 2014, Merton College in Oxford celebrates its 750th year. For this disc, Benjamin Nicholas and Peter Phillips have created a program that journeys through three quarters of a millennium of choral repertoire. Not just a demonstration of this accomplished ensemble's versatility, the recording also provides a bird's-eye view of some important moments in musical history, and features two composers - John Dunstaple and Lennox Berkeley - associated with the college as well as three works specially commissioned for the anniversary celebrations. The choir, a relatively recent addition to this illustrious college's complement of treasures, gives stylish and committed performances in the famous acoustic of Merton's chapel.

American Record Guide, March/April 2014
The program opens with the stunning evening canticles (Merton College Service) of Eriks Esensvalds, one of three works composed for the anniversary celebration. Parry's 'There is an Old Belief', this is a terrific program and it is sung very well by a mixed choir that is making a name for itself since going from being a minor player in Oxbridge choral music to one of the best collegiate choirs in the land after Benjamin Nicholas became director of music in 2008. The choir's fine singing is captured with clarity and brightness once your ears get adjusted to the brightness of the sound, you can enjoy the fine singing.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013).



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Works Details

>Esenvalds, Eriks : Magnificat, for alto, chorus, & organ
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Ensemble: Choir of Merton College, Oxford
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 54 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>Esenvalds, Eriks : Nunc dimittis, for alto, chorus, & organ
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Ensemble: Choir of Merton College, Oxford
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 55 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>Dunstable, John : Veni Sancte Spiritus, isorhythmic motet for 4 voices, MB 32
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Peter Phillips
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 7 sec.
  • Period Time: Medieval
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: circa 1410-1453

>Sheppard, John : Libera nos, salve nos (I), for 7 voices
  • Performers: Francis Shepherd (Cantor); Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Peter Phillips
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 42 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance

>Pärt, Arvo : The Woman with the Alabaster Box
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1997

>Parry, Charles H. : Songs of Farewell (6) for chorus :: no 4, There is an old belief
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 54 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic

>Byrd, William : Praise the Lord, all ye Gentiles, anthem for 6 voices (SSATTB)
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Peter Phillips
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 45 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Form: Choral

>Gibbons, Orlando : This is the record of John
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 9 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 1611

>Berkeley, Lennox : Latin Motets (3), for 5 voices, Op. 83/1 :: Veni sponsa Christi
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 44 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 1972

>Purcell, Henry : Hear my prayer, O Lord
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Peter Phillips
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Baroque
  • Written: circa 1681

>Purcell, Henry : Remember not, Lord, our offences, Z 50
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 47 sec.
  • Period Time: Baroque
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: circa 1681

>Vaughan Williams, Ralph : Valiant for Truth, motet for chorus (with piano or organ ad lib)
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 1940

>Stanford, Charles Villiers : Justorum Animae, motet for chorus, Op. 38/1
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1888

>Stanford, Charles Villiers : Beati quorum via, motet for chorus, Op. 38/3
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 34 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: ?1890

>Mundy, William : Magnificat
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Peter Phillips
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Form: Choral

>Mundy, William : The secret sins
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Peter Phillips
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 39 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Form: Choral

>Lavino, James : Beati quorum via, for chorus
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 36 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>Green, Maurice : Lord, Let Me Know Mine End, anthem for chorus
  • Performers: Polly Gamble; Anna Steppler (Organ); Emily Tann
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 9 sec.
  • Period Time: Baroque
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 1725-1730

>Gjeilo, Ola : Sacred Origins, for chorus & organ
  • Performer: Anna Steppler (Organ)
  • Conductor: Benjamin Nicholas
  • Notes: Chapel of Merton College, Oxford (04/13/2013-04/15/2013)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 26 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary