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Journey Into Light - Music for the Festivals of Advent, Christmas, Epiphany and Candlemas by E.Poston; W.McKie; Patrick Hadley; Judith Weir; Britten et al. / Choir of Jesus College Cambridge

Album Summary

>Poston, Elisabeth : Jesus Christ the Apple Tree
>McKie, William : We Wait for Thy Loving Kindness, O God, for chorus & organ
>Hadley, Patrick : I sing of a maiden
>Weir, Judith : Advent Prose, for chorus
>Joubert, John : There Is No Rose, for chorus, Op. 14
>Britten, Benjamin : Hymn to the Virgin
>Muhly, Nico : Bright Star Carol, for chorus & organ
>Darke, Harold Edwin : In the Bleak Midwinter
>Gardner, John Linton : Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day, for chorus, Op. 75/2
>Chilcott, Robert : Shepherd's Carol
>Traditional, Christmas : I Saw Three Ships, carol
>Head, Michael : The Little Road to Bethlehem
>Kirkpatrick, William J. : Away in a manger
>Mathias, William : Sir Christemas
>Tavener, John : The Lamb "Little Lamb, who made thee?"
>Cook, John : Paean on Divinum Mysterium for organ
>Bingham, Judith : Epiphany, anthem
>Howells, Herbert : Here is the little door
>Warlock, Peter [Composer] : Bethlehem Down, carol for chorus & organ
>Burgon, Geoffrey : Nunc dimittis, for chorus, trumpet & organ
>Rutter, John : Hymn to the Creator of Light
Performers Conductor Ensembles Composers

Notes & Reviews:

A new festive release from the Choir of Jesus College Cambridge under their director Mark Williams - with additional performances from organists Robert Dixon and Timothy Lambourn, and trumpeter Rebecca Crawshaw. The program is drawn from pieces for the festivals of Advent, Christmas, Epiphany and Candlemas: "Of the annual Christian seasons, it is surely that from Advent to Epiphany which inspires believer and non-believer alike the most: the believer celebrates Christ's birth whilst the non-believer considers hopes for rebirth and renewal as a New Year approaches ... If aspirations surrounding the arrival of a new born child are universal, the Christmas music chosen here reflects the season's inspiration through quite recent compositions, alongside music from the early part of the 20th century." -Mark Williams

American Record Guide, November/December 2013
If you're looking for a program that offers a contrast to the sound of a choir of men and boys in some of the seasonal standbys, you'll get that right away with a mature female solo voice singing the first verse of Elizabeth Poston's 'Jesus Christ the Apple Tree' to begin the program. A richly shaped performance of Britten's 'Hymn to the Virgin' is enhanced by nicely balanced contrast between the choir and solo quartet of choral scholars. The program ends with a glorious performance of John Rutter's 'Hymn to the Creator of Light', composed for the dedication of the Herbert Howells memorial window in Gloucester Cathedral in 1992. It's one of Rutter's most lushly gorgeous works. At 7:22 it's the longest work of the program, and it alone is enough to make this worth getting. Even if you already have an abundance of Christmas recordings, this will find a welcome place in your collection, as it does in mine.

BBC Music Magazine, Christmas 2012
Another Oxbridge college, another fine mixed-voice choir, another gorgeously captured chapel acoustic (Mike Hatch engineering) - this selection of favourite pieces by mainly British composers makes a pleasingly intimate impression.

MusicWeb International, November 2012
The choral singing is superb...I really enjoyed this record and looked forward to playing it often. The excellence of the singing coupled with the aptness of the selection make this collection special.

Gramophone Magazine, December 2012
A disc of mainstream Christmas music...which showcases the combined forces of the college's chapel choir, with its top line of boys, and the mixed-voice college choir. It's a performance of full, rich sounds from a group who are among the unsung heroes of a collegiate choir circuit currently dominated by the larger colleges.

International Record Review, December 2012
This is an attractive and very well-planned disc of music from Advent to Epiphany ... The sound is unobtrusively excellent and the booklet includes complete sung texts. If the programme appeals (as it certainly does me), then my advice is to let yourself be tempted.



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Works Details

>Poston, Elisabeth : Jesus Christ the Apple Tree
  • Performer: Emma Walton
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Ensemble: Choir of Jesus College Cambridge
  • Running Time: 3 min. 5 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1967

>McKie, William : We Wait for Thy Loving Kindness, O God, for chorus & organ
  • Performers: Alexander Beetschen; Robert Dixon (Organ)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 2 min. 31 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern

>Hadley, Patrick : I sing of a maiden
  • Performer: Robert Dixon (Organ)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 2 min. 43 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1936

>Weir, Judith : Advent Prose, for chorus
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 1 min. 42 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1983

>Joubert, John : There Is No Rose, for chorus, Op. 14
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 2 min. 29 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Christmas

>Britten, Benjamin : Hymn to the Virgin
  • Performers: Edward Leach; Matthew Smith; Olympia Hetherington
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 3 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1930

>Muhly, Nico : Bright Star Carol, for chorus & organ
  • Performer: Robert Dixon (Organ)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 3 min. 52 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Christmas

>Darke, Harold Edwin : In the Bleak Midwinter
  • Performers: Timothy Lambourn (Organ); Alasdair Austin (Treble); Jaliya Senanayake
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 4 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 19th Century

>Gardner, John Linton : Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day, for chorus, Op. 75/2
  • Performer: Timothy Lambourn (Organ)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 2 min. 6 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1965

>Chilcott, Robert : Shepherd's Carol
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 2 min. 53 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 2000

>Traditional, Christmas : I Saw Three Ships, carol
  • Performers: Edward Leach; Timothy Lambourn (Organ); Nico Bryan (Treble)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 2 min. 3 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: circa 1666

>Head, Michael : The Little Road to Bethlehem
  • Performer: Robert Dixon (Organ)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 2 min. 59 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Christmas

>Kirkpatrick, William J. : Away in a manger :: Cradle Song) (New English Hymnal 22)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 2 min. 56 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1885

>Mathias, William : Sir Christèmas
  • Performer: Timothy Lambourn (Organ)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 1 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Christmas

>Tavener, John : The Lamb "Little Lamb, who made thee?"
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 3 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 1982

>Cook, John : Paean on Divinum Mysterium for organ
  • Performer: Timothy Lambourn (Organ)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 4 min. 20 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1956

>Bingham, Judith : Epiphany, anthem
  • Performer: Robert Dixon (Organ)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 3 min. 36 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>Howells, Herbert : Here is the little door
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 3 min. 59 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1918

>Warlock, Peter [Composer] : Bethlehem Down, carol for chorus & organ
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 4 min. 3 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1927

>Burgon, Geoffrey : Nunc dimittis, for chorus, trumpet & organ
  • Performers: Robert Dixon (Organ); Rebecca Crawshaw (Trumpet)
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 2 min. 45 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1979

>Rutter, John : Hymn to the Creator of Light
  • Conductor: Mark Williams
  • Running Time: 7 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: circa 1992