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Best known for his inspired Son of God Mass for saxophone, choir and organ, the British composer, conductor and writer James Whitbourn is admired for his fresh, distinctive yet accessible compositional voice.
Setting texts from ancient seers to the modern luminary Desmond Tutu (who himself features on the disc), the works on his new recording reflect the breadth of the composer’s achievement, from the monumental Magnificat written for King’s College Cambridge, to the Classical Indian fusion work Luminosity – a rare choral work composed for dance.
They are performed by Commotio, an Oxford-based chamber choir which specialises in contemporary choral repertoire.
“A highly impressive [CD] debut ... The choir has ...masterly technical control and precision of pitching, and a pleasing uniformity of tone across its full dynamic range. One of its most impressive attributes, however, is the extraordinary clarity of its diction.” International Record Review on a previous disc
"The choir has … a reputation for the quality of its performances, which invariably combine vocal purity, technical expertise and a deep sense of commitment." Classical Music, December 2005
James Whitbourn: Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis, "Collegium Regale"
James Whitbourn: Alleluia jubilate
James Whitbourn: A Prayer of Desmond Tutu
A Prayer of Desmond Tutu
James Whitbourn: He carried me away in the spirit
He carried me away in the spirit
James Whitbourn: Pure river of water of life
Pure river of water of life
James Whitbourn: Eternal Rest
James Whitbourn: Of one that is so fair and bright
Of one that is so fair and bright
James Whitbourn: Annelies
Annelies: There is no speech or language
James Whitbourn: Luminosity
I. Lux in tenebris
II. The Changing Scenes
IV. The Living Thing
V. Castle of Diamonds
VI. Ask the Beauty
VII. All Shall be Well
14th March 2010
“Luminosity...glows with hypnotic brilliance, fusing powerful vocal writing with seductive eastern influences, while his Evening Canticles for King's and his setting of a prayer by Desmond Tutu illustrate the boundless breadth of Whitbourn's choral imagination.”
“The music itself proves striking enough in this glowingly committed performance by the Oxford chamber choir Commotio...superbly sympathetic.”