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It’s good to be reminded of the late Sir Richard Rodney Bennett’s skill as a choral writer. The Glory and the Dream, a setting taken from Wordsworth’s Intimations of Immortality, shows his unerring grip of the genre and his deep understanding of a text. The organ part, beautifully played by Thomas Murray, adds an extra dimension to the words, and the young Yale Schola Cantorum gives a beautifully rounded performance. To surround the work with music of the English renaissance makes for a pleasing contrast. It was a time of upheaval and change in the church, and the early clarity of lines was beginning to move into a more harmonic form, exemplified by the verse anthem, and the compositional ingenuity of Taverner, Gibbons and Tallis in walking a tightrope is beyond dispute. Tallis’s Te lucis ante terminum cleverly gives us a reminder of what had been previously. The lucidity of the singing and phrasing under the expert guidance of Simon Carrington together with excellent soloists taken from the singers makes for very pleasurable listening.

SHIRLEY RATCLIFFE Read the full review on Agora Classica


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