Blest Cecilia - Britten Choral Works I / The Sixteen

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Fans of Benjamin Britten and of The Sixteen will rejoice at this reissue of material from the choir's acclaimed three-volume Britten series originally recorded for the now-defunct Collins label. (Presumably all of the music from the complete set eventually will appear under the Sixteen's new Coro emblem.) If you know the earlier recordings, you'll quickly notice that the program here is different from the original configurations: there are five selections from Collins' Vol. 3--Hymn to the Virgin, A Hymn of Saint Columba, Hymn to Saint Peter, Jubilate Deo, Festival Te Deum; three from Vol. 2--Rejoice in the Lamb; Antiphon; Te Deum in C; and the Hymn to Saint Cecilia from Vol. 1.

Recorded performances of Britten's choral music don't get any better than this. No one will argue that this choir was/is capable of singing anything, and singing it as well as or better than anyone--and these Britten pieces are made for exuberant, exultant, exacting singing that the Sixteen can do without a blip, a glitch, or the slightest faltering step. From the fawning, devotional A Hymn to the Virgin to the wild and glorious Rejoice in the Lamb, this is music most perfectly created and most grandly and emphatically presented. A first-class effort; a classic.

--David Vernier

Hymn to the Virgin
A Hymn of Saint Columba
Hymn to Saint Peter
Te Deum in C
Jubilate Deo
Hymn to Saint Cecilia
Festival Te Deum
Rejoice in the Lamb

Product Description:

  • Catalog Number: COR16006

  • UPC: 828021600623

  • Label: Coro

  • Composer: Benjamin Britten

  • Conductor: Harry Christophers

  • Orchestra/Ensemble: The Sixteen

  • Performer: Caroline Trevor, Carys-Anne Lane, Deborah Miles-Johnson, Libby Crabtree, Margaret Philips, Nicola Jenkin, Philip Daggett, Ruth Dean, Simon Berridge, Simon Birchall