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Britten: A Ceremony of Carols Original recording reissued


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Audio CD, Original recording reissued, March 23, 2004
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Editorial Reviews

Audio CD

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. Hymn to St Cecilia Op. 27 (2004 Digital Remaster): I. In a garden shady this holy ladyChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Sir David Willcocks 2:57$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Hymn to St Cecilia Op. 27 (2004 Digital Remaster): II. I cannot growChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Sir David Willcocks 2:10$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Hymn to St Cecilia Op. 27 (2004 Digital Remaster): III. O ear whose creatures cannot wish to fallChoir Of King's College, Cambridge/Sir David Willcocks/Richard Cross 6:21$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): I: ProcessionChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 1:16$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): II: Wolcum Yole!Choir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 1:23$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): III. There is no roseChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 2:21$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): IV: (a) That yongë childChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 1:52$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): IV: (b) BalulalowChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 1:39$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): V: As dew in AprilleChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark0:58$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): VI: This little BabeChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 1:25$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): VII: Interlude (Andante pastorale) [harp]Choir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 3:34$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. A Ceremony Of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): VIII: In Freezing Winter NightChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 4:11$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): IX: Spring CarolChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 1:12$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): X: Deo Gracias!Choir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 1:12$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen15. A Ceremony of Carols Op. 28 (2004 Digital Remaster): XI: RecessionChoir of King's College, Cambridge/Osian Ellis/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Godlee/James Clark 1:20$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen16. Missa brevis in D Op. 63 (2004 Digital Remaster): I. KyrieChoir Of King's College, Cambridge/Ian Hare/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Brown/Christopher Anderson/Anthony Sackville/Rory Phillips/James Clark 1:34$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen17. Missa brevis in D Op. 63 (2004 Digital Remaster): II. GloriaChoir Of King's College, Cambridge/Ian Hare/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Brown/Christopher Anderson/Anthony Sackville/Rory Phillips/James Clark 2:50$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen18. Missa brevis in D Op. 63 (2004 Digital Remaster): III. SanctusChoir Of King's College, Cambridge/Ian Hare/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Brown/Christopher Anderson/Anthony Sackville/Rory Phillips/James Clark 1:23$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen19. Missa brevis in D Op. 63 (2004 Digital Remaster): IV. BenedictusChoir Of King's College, Cambridge/Ian Hare/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Brown/Christopher Anderson/Anthony Sackville/Rory Phillips/James Clark 1:44$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen20. Missa brevis in D Op. 63 (2004 Digital Remaster): V. Agnus DeiChoir Of King's College, Cambridge/Ian Hare/Sir David Willcocks/Julian Brown/Christopher Anderson/Anthony Sackville/Rory Phillips/James Clark 2:33$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen21. Festival Te Deum Op. 32 (2004 Digital Remaster)Simon Channing/James Lancelot/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/Sir Philip Ledger 6:27$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen22. Rejoice in the Lamb - Festival Cantata Op. 30 (2004 Digital Remaster): Rejoice in God, O ye Tongues (choir)Simon Channing/James Bowman/Richard Morton/Marcus Creed/James Lancelot/David Corkhill/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/Sir Philip Ledger 3:55$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen23. Rejoice in the Lamb - Festival Cantata Op. 30 (2004 Digital Remaster): For I will consider my Cat Jeoffry (treble)Simon Channing/James Bowman/Richard Morton/Marcus Creed/James Lancelot/David Corkhill/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/Sir Philip Ledger 2:11$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen24. Rejoice in the Lamb - Festival Cantata Op. 30 (2004 Digital Remaster): For the Mouse is a creature of great personal valour (alto)Simon Channing/James Bowman/Richard Morton/Marcus Creed/James Lancelot/David Corkhill/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/Sir Philip Ledger0:54$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen25. Rejoice in the Lamb - Festival Cantata Op. 30 (2004 Digital Remaster): For the flowers are great blessings (tenor)Simon Channing/James Bowman/Richard Morton/Marcus Creed/James Lancelot/David Corkhill/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/Sir Philip Ledger 2:01$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen26. Rejoice in the Lamb - Festival Cantata Op. 30 (2004 Digital Remaster): For I am under the same accusation (choir)Simon Channing/James Bowman/Richard Morton/Marcus Creed/James Lancelot/David Corkhill/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/Sir Philip Ledger 2:25$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen27. Rejoice in the Lamb - Festival Cantata Op. 30 (2004 Digital Remaster): For He is the spirit (bass and choir)Simon Channing/James Bowman/Richard Morton/Marcus Creed/James Lancelot/David Corkhill/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/Sir Philip Ledger 3:49$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen28. Rejoice in the Lamb - Festival Cantata Op. 30 (2004 Digital Remaster): Hallelujah (choir)Simon Channing/James Bowman/Richard Morton/Marcus Creed/James Lancelot/David Corkhill/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/Sir Philip Ledger 1:12$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen29. Te Deum (1934) (2004 Digital Remaster)Rory Phillips/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/James Lancelot/Sir Philip Ledger 7:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen30. Jubilate Deo (1961) (2004 Digital Remaster)James Lancelot/Choir Of King'S College, Cambridge/Sir Philip Ledger 2:29$0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Performer: Choir of King's College Cambridge, James Bowman, Osian Ellis, Ian Hare, James Lancelot, et al.
  • Conductor: David Willcocks, Philip Ledger
  • Composer: Benjamin Britten
  • Audio CD (March 23, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued
  • Label: EMI Classics
  • ASIN: B0001HAHHS
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #297,811 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

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See all 7 customer reviews
David Willcocks gets it right!
David S.
The voices of the choir, accompanied by one harp, weave an achingly beautiful tapestry of sound.
R. Poudrier
Wonderful music to listen to, anytime.
Bill Herrin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By R. Poudrier on October 10, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Way back in the dark ages, before CDs roamed the earth, I purchased the LP of this recording. It remains my favorite performance of Britten's work. The voices of the choir, accompanied by one harp, weave an achingly beautiful tapestry of sound. It is a wonderful way to introduce children and friends to the English choral tradition of sacred music.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By W. Parr on September 28, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Captivating from start to finish: EMI has programmed & remastered this bounty of Britten choral work superbly. The Choir of King's College, Cambridge performs with stunning sensitivity, ethereal, heartbreaking & transcendent. A just classic disc
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 22, 2010
Format: Audio CD
The works of Benjamin Britten on this recording were originally recorded in 1972 and 1974 and have been transferred from vinyl to CD, remastered in 1987, and still remain as fine as any recordings subsequent to these mysteriously beautiful works. In particular the 'Ceremony of Carols' for treble voices and harp recorded in King's College allows the procession and recession to 'feel' like an entry and exit - very atmospheric. The harpist for this recording is the famous Welsh harpist Osian Ellis and gives his role a more important sound than other harpists on other recordings.

The other works on this recording include the joyous 'Hymn to St. Cecilia' for unaccompanied chorus, the festival cantata 'Rejoice in the Lamb' which happens to include among the soloists the now famous James Bowman, countertenor!, the 'Te Deum in C' and 'Jubilate Deo' both with organist James Lancelot and the far too rarely heard 'Missa Brevis in D'. The choir is up to its usual high standards as are the two conductors Sir David Willocks (Ceremony of Carols, Hymn to St Cecelia, Missa Brevis) and Philip Ledger (Te Deum, Jubilate Deo and Rejoice in the Lamb). The acoustics of the chapel add greatly to the joy of this very special recording. Grady Harp, December 10
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By George Peabody VINE VOICE on July 11, 2010
Format: Audio CD
TWO KING'S COLLEGE CONDUCTORS PERFORM BRITTEN: Willcocks 1972 & Ledger 1974.

"A Ceremony of Carols" for treble voices and harp consists of nine carols of medieval origin preceded by a Processional ending with a Recessional. The performance of this work by Willcocks is totally excellent; the diction is clear and precise while the quality of the boy sopranos is crystalline. Unlike the later 1990 Cleobury recording in which the vocal quality was not 'up to par' and the diction somewhat 'muddy'. In addition, Cleobury's soprano soloist was ill-chosen for his tone was breathy to the point of annoyance.

"Hymn to St. Cecilia" very well might have been composed by Britten because he was born on St. Cecilia's day, so he wanted to write something for himself. Written in 1942, it is a setting of a W.H. Auden poem, the music reflecting the restrained intensity of the words. Quite an interesting work and well produced by Willcocks.

"Rejoice in the Lamb"(Festival Cantata) sets excerpts from an extended poem by the 18th century poet, Christopher Smart. Britten sets ten short sections, all dedicated to the glory of God. The cantata is scored for four soloists, four-part chorus, organ and (in this version) percussion. Here again Ledger's choir far surpasses Cleobury's 1990 disc.

"Te Deum & Jubilate Deo in C". The 'Te Deum' dates from 1935 and is written for treble solo, four-part choir and organ. the 'Jubilate', although composed much later, in 1961, is also in C, and forms a convenient comparison work. In these two compositions Britten eschews any banal display of contrapuntal writing so characteristic a trademark of countless shorter settings. Ledger's choir performed these wonderfully well, and I loved both of them!
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