Happy New Year!! + some musical research

Best wishes
 to you all for a fulfilling, grace-filled 2019!!
As my friends will know, I'm someone who likes to share with others the things that move me, that touch me in some way, the things I'm passionate about, that open me up to the presence of God in my life and the lives of others, be they films, pieces of classical music, worship songs, photographs, etc...
I also like to use the school holidays to catch up on classical music research of the kind that we can do nowadays, thanks to the internet, music streaming services, etc..., comparing recordings of the same piece.
Among the pieces that I have been researching during the past few days are the following pieces that are among my all-time favourites:
- Howells' Requiem
- Ravel's Piano Concerto in G (the slow mvt.)
- Bruckner's 8th Symphony
- Mahler's 5th Symphony
- Tallis' hymn "Why fum'th in fight the gentiles spite" (which provided the inspiration for Vaughan Williams' heavenly Fantasia On A Theme Of Thomas Tallis)
- Bach's St. Matthew Passion + Brandenburg Concertos
- Debussy's Nocturnes
I'd like to share with you a few of these. Here's the Howells. If I had to choose one desert island disc it would be this glorious recording of his Requiem by Paul McCreesh and his Gabrieli Singers. Until yesterday, my desert island disc was the mid-'80s recording of the same piece by Matthew Best and the Corydon Singers. I've listened to numerous recordings since first hearing this one while I was studying Music at Liverpool Uni. in the late '80s and none has come close to reaching the same level of emotion and sensitivity... that is, until I heard the Gabrieli Singers' recording. This, for me, is pure musical perfection, in terms of composition and performance. After 1min. 40secs. on "et lux perpetua" I get shivers done my spine and find myself transported to another realm. For me, nothing else in the whole of artistic creation comes as close as this movement of Howells' Requiem, in this recording, to deserving the description "heavenly".


Edward Palamar said…
We have entered the "age to come" foretold by Jesus in Mark 10:30.


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