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O'Regan: Threshold of Night, etc / Johnson, Conspirare, Company of Voices

Album Summary

>O'Regan, Tarik : Had I not seen the sun
>O'Regan, Tarik : The ecstasies above
>O'Regan, Tarik : Threshold of Night
>O'Regan, Tarik : Tal vez tenemos tiempo
>O'Regan, Tarik : Care charminge sleepe
>O'Regan, Tarik : Triptych
>O'Regan, Tarik : I had no time to hate
Performers Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

"The works collected here show him to have an assured, individual voice; consummate technique as a choral composer; and an ability to create complex music that's not "difficult," that has an immediately sensual appeal. O'Regan's harmonic language is rooted in tonality, but it is richly saturated with chromaticism. He uses dissonance in the old-fashioned way, creating tension that finds satisfying, if unconventional, resolution. The result is sometimes astonishingly new sounding, but it establishes a direct emotional connection that's hard to resist." -All Music Guide

International Record Review
One of the most gifted young British composers writing for massed voices at the moment

Choir & Organ
The polished performance by US choir Conspirare with string ensemble breathes energy into a series of diverse texts crafted into pieces that are a masterclass in how to refine ideas, by a composer with a profound understanding of how to write for choirs.

BBC Music Magazine
It's difficult to describe O'Regan's music without recourse to smiles based on light. His writing for the upper voices, especially, shimmers and shines, often suggesting outpourings of celestial radiance.

Organists Review
One of the finest discs dedicated to an individual contemporary composer I have heard this year

Gramophone Classical Music Guide
Tarik O'Regan can justifiably stake a claim as one of the leading British choral composers of his generation. This is supported to an extent by the seven choral compositions contained on this recording.

At the basis of O'Regan's style lies a thoroughgoing understanding of both the English choral tradition and medieval music, a knowledge gained from studies at Oxford and Cambridge.

But recent works suggest that he casts his creative net much wider these days. Post-minimal and pop features can be detected in the use of straightforward harmonic progressions and melodic repetitions in the final sections of both The Ecstasies Above and Triptych, where O'Regan dispenses with contrapuntal complexity for a direct and unadorned approach. If this suggests an American influence then it is also evident in his choice of text settings, with Edgar Allan Poe and Emily Dickinson's poetry framing the collection.

However, it is sometimes difficult not to draw comparisons between the often static, sometimes propulsive, polymodal layers incorporated throughout O'Regan's music (especially effective in Care Charming Sleepe) and similar processes at work in the choral writing of John Adams. In contrast, Adams has effected a fine timbral and textural balance between voices and instruments in his music - homogeneity rather than hierarchy - but one senses that the string instruments contained on this recording struggle to find their place in and among the dense choral web.



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Works Details

>O'Regan, Tarik : Had I not seen the sun
  • Performers: Jonathan Subia; Melissa Givens (Soprano)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 52 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2007

>O'Regan, Tarik : The ecstasies above
  • Ensemble: Company of Strings
  • Running Time: 17 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2006

>O'Regan, Tarik : Threshold of Night
  • Performers: Kathlene Ritch (Soprano); Nina Revering (Soprano); Tracy Shirk; Carr Hornbuckle
  • Running Time: 6 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2006

>O'Regan, Tarik : Tal vez tenemos tiempo
  • Running Time: 7 min. 49 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2007

>O'Regan, Tarik : Care charminge sleepe
  • Performer: Nina Revering (Soprano)
  • Ensemble: Company of Strings
  • Running Time: 6 min. 13 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1999

>O'Regan, Tarik : Triptych
  • Performer: Nina Revering (Soprano)
  • Ensemble: Company of Strings
  • Running Time: 17 min. 35 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2005

>O'Regan, Tarik : I had no time to hate
  • Performers: Melissa Givens (Soprano); Jonathan Subia
  • Running Time: 2 min. 13 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2007