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Comment: Former library item, withdrawn from circulation. It has the usual library stamps and markings. CD has several surface scratches or marks, but is guaranteed to play fine. Liner notes are in great condition. Jewel case has noticeable surface wear. Orders ship same or next business day; expedited available. All orders have USPS delivery confirmation/tracking numbers.
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Sacred & Profane Import

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Audio CD, Import, April 10, 2001
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

This disc containing the major part of Britten's mixed-voice a cappella repertoire (the Hymn to St Cecilia is the only substantial omission) could hardly be a better showcase for the virtuosity of Polyphony and the increasingly assured talents of Stephen Layton. There's every sign that this music is particularly well "sung in": the phrasing--whether rapid, rat-a-tat, or relaxed--carries such a sense of rightness and unanimity, always knowing precisely where it's going; the vowel colors are nothing if not alluring; and, most noticeable of all, the blend and balance of voices are exceptional. The excellent recorded sound picks up all the benefit from the airy spaces of the Temple Church in London without ever becoming swimmy. The works span a period of some 45 years of Britten's life, from the ever-popular childhood A Hymn to the Virgin to the often fiendishly tricky Sacred and Profane based on that intriguing mix of eight medieval lyrics. The "Choral Dances" from the opera Gloriana, recalling the celebrations for Queen Elizabeth II's coronation, are ravishingly sung. And there is nothing better here than the performance of A.M.D.G., where Polyphony gives the Gerard Manley Hopkins poetry all the passionate commitment it demands. --Andrew Green

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Flower Songs (5), for chorus, Op. 47: 1. To Daffodils (Robert Herrick)
  2. Flower Songs (5), for chorus, Op. 47: 2. The Succession of the Four Sweet Months (Rober Herrick)
  3. Flower Songs (5), for chorus, Op. 47: 3. Marsh Flowers (George Crabbe)
  4. Flower Songs (5), for chorus, Op. 47: 4. The Evening Primrose (John Clare)
  5. Flower Songs (5), for chorus, Op. 47: 5. The Ballad of Green Broom (Anon.)
  6. A. M. D. G. (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam), for chorus, Op. 17: Prayer I
  7. A. M. D. G. (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam), for chorus, Op. 17: Rosa Mystica
  8. A. M. D. G. (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam), for chorus, Op. 17: God's Grandeur
  9. A. M. D. G. (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam), for chorus, Op. 17: Prayer II
  10. A. M. D. G. (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam), for chorus, Op. 17: O Deus, ego amo te
  11. A. M. D. G. (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam), for chorus, Op. 17: The Soldier
  12. A. M. D. G. (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam), for chorus, Op. 17: Heaven-Haven
  13. A Hymn to the Virgin, for double chorus
  14. Choral Dances (6) from Gloriana, for chorus (or tenor, chorus & harpsichord), Op. 53: Time
  15. Choral Dances (6) from Gloriana, for chorus (or tenor, chorus & harpsichord), Op. 53: Concord
  16. Choral Dances (6) from Gloriana, for chorus (or tenor, chorus & harpsichord), Op. 53: Time and Concord
  17. Choral Dances (6) from Gloriana, for chorus (or tenor, chorus & harpsichord), Op. 53: Country Girls
  18. Choral Dances (6) from Gloriana, for chorus (or tenor, chorus & harpsichord), Op. 53: Rustics and Fisherman
  19. Choral Dances (6) from Gloriana, for chorus (or tenor, chorus & harpsichord), Op. 53: Final Dance of Homage
  20. Chorale on an Old French Carol, for double chorus
  21. Sacred and Profane, medieval lyrics (8) for SSATB chorus, Op. 91: St. Godric's Hymn
  22. Sacred and Profane, medieval lyrics (8) for SSATB chorus, Op. 91: I Mon Waxe Wod
  23. Sacred and Profane, medieval lyrics (8) for SSATB chorus, Op. 91: Lenten is Come
  24. Sacred and Profane, medieval lyrics (8) for SSATB chorus, Op. 91: The Long Night
  25. Sacred and Profane, medieval lyrics (8) for SSATB chorus, Op. 91: Yif Ic Of Luve Can
  26. Sacred and Profane, medieval lyrics (8) for SSATB chorus, Op. 91: Carol
  27. Sacred and Profane, medieval lyrics (8) for SSATB chorus, Op. 91: Ye That Passen By
  28. Sacred and Profane, medieval lyrics (8) for SSATB chorus, Op. 91: A Death


Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 10, 2001)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Hyperion UK
  • ASIN: B00005A7LW
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #923,800 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By Robert M. Smith on May 13, 2009
Format: Audio CD
The Layton offering fills the gap of not only giving a person Britten choral performances of something other than the umteenth Ceremony of Carols, but possibly works (which for me, at least) are relatively unknown. The Flower Songs and the offerings from Gloriana are especially beautiful pieces. They are performed by something called 'Polyphony', a choral force with PERFECT ensemble and giving a scaled-down chamber approach, which one can apppreciate in the opera offering.
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