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MacMillian: Miserere / Harry Christophers, The Sixteen

Audio Samples

>MacMillan, James : Miserere, for chorus
>MacMillan, James : Strathclyde Motets, for chorus
>MacMillan, James : O bone Jesu, for a cappella chorus
>MacMillan, James : Tenebrae Responsories, for chorus

Album Summary

>MacMillan, James : Miserere, for chorus
>MacMillan, James : Strathclyde Motets, for chorus
>MacMillan, James : O bone Jesu, for a cappella chorus
>MacMillan, James : Tenebrae Responsories, for chorus
Performers Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

In November 2011, Harry Christophers and The Sixteen will release the premiere recording of James MacMillan's exquisite Miserere for the CORO label. Continuing their work with Scotland's most prominent living composer, The Sixteen's UK premiere of the Miserere at London's 2010 Spitalfields Festival won both public and critical acclaim. Based on Psalm 51, the Miserere mei has been set to music many times over the centuries but few composers have tackled the complete text. Now, the CORO label is delighted to release the first recording of James MacMillan's 21st-century take on this work!

Gramophone Magazine
The Sixteen's uniquely warm and graceful sound certainly seems to have tapped a particularly timeless and atmospheric vein in Macmillan's creative persona and he has here presented them with something which tests not so much their collective virtuosity as their most profround musical instincts...This disc bears testament to a rare and wonderful relationship between composer, choir and conductor.

Financial Times
MacMillan not only imbibes the plainchant tradition of the medieval masters but embellishes it with his own distinctive touches...The Sixteen, directed by Harry Christophers, sing this music as if they really believe in it.

The Telegraph
James MacMillan has always shown a flair for dramatic portrayals of spiritual conflict: light against dark, anxiety and despair against consolation...The Sixteen surmount them all [technical demands] triumphantly, and make a sound of impassioned warmth and pinpoint accuracy.

BBC Music Magazine
One reason this disc makes such a resoundingly positive impression is that The Sixteen are thoroughly caught up in MacMillan's writing....at every the stage the singers are in focus technically and emotionally...With everything superbly recorded, this is a disc to return to often, and in which to discover new things each time.

The Arts Desk
This collection of a capella choral music is astonishingly accomplished...The occasional flashes of sensuality make this music a real pleasure to listen to; like Poulenc, MacMillan can't disguise his delight when sneaking into his sacred texts a particularly fruity chord progression...This is contemporary religious music for believers and doubters, and the performances are beyond praise. Astonishingly good.



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Works Details

>MacMillan, James : Miserere, for chorus
  • Performers: Elin Thomas (Soprano); Eamonn Dougan (Baritone); Mark Dobell (Tenor)
  • Conductor: Harry Christophers
  • Ensemble: The Sixteen
  • Running Time: 12 min. 34 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>MacMillan, James : Strathclyde Motets, for chorus
  • Conductor: Harry Christophers
  • Ensemble: The Sixteen
  • Running Time: 3 min. 48 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>MacMillan, James : O bone Jesu, for a cappella chorus
  • Performers: Robert Evans (Bass-Baritone); Cecilia Osmond (Soprano); Mark Dobell (Tenor); Rebecca Outram (Soprano)
  • Conductor: Harry Christophers
  • Ensemble: The Sixteen
  • Running Time: 10 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 2002

>MacMillan, James : Strathclyde Motets, for chorus
  • Performer: Mark Dobell (Tenor)
  • Conductor: Harry Christophers
  • Ensemble: The Sixteen
  • Running Time: 3 min. 48 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>MacMillan, James : Tenebrae Responsories, for chorus
  • Conductor: Harry Christophers
  • Ensemble: The Sixteen
  • Running Time: 19 min. 49 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary