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03 February 2023
Gautete! Carols and organ music from Clifton Cathedral

Choir of Clifton Cathedral
David Ogden (conductor)
Ian Ball (organ)
Catherine Snelson (harp)

The word Carol once meant to dance in a ring and as such came into use to describe song that is also religious in impulse, not necessarily connected with Christmas. Evidence of these origins can be seen from Gaudete (meaning Rejoice) to Tomorrow shall be my dancing day, each contribution through the ages revealing its views of the majesty and beauty of the story of Christmas. Britten's Ceremony of Carols forms the central part of this recording binding together strands of modern thinking, ancient melody (plainsong from the Vespers of the Nativity) and folksong through the old modes. Additionally, through Baroque and Victorian music, we discover that the very concept of Christmas undergoes constant reinterpretation and that this is reflected in the music of the time. It is hoped that the listener will find something new or revealing in this recording and that they will rejoice at Christmastide.


Benjamin Britten: A Ceremony of Carols

I. Processional

II. Wolcome Yole!

III. There is no rose

IV. This little babe

V. Balulalow

VI. Interlude

VII. Deo Gracias

VIII. Recession

William Mathias: Alleluya, a new work is come on hand

H.J. Gauntlet, transcr. David Willcocks: Once in Royal David's City

Francis Poulenc: Hodie Christus natus est

W. J. Kirkpatrick, transcr. David Willcocks: Away in a manger

Johann Sebastian Bach: Gott, durch deine Güte, BWV 600

Johann Sebastian Bach: Herr Christ, der ein'ge Gottesohn, BWV 601

Trad. transcr. Arthur Sullivan & David Willcocks: It came upon a midnight clear

Johannes Brahms: Schmücke dich, O liebe Seele, Op.122

Johannes Brahms: Es ist ein Ros' entsprungen

Trad: Gaudete

John Gardner: Tomorrow shall be my dancing day

Johann Sebastian Bach: Der Tag, der ist so freudenreich, BWV 605

Johann Sebastian Bach: Vom Himmell kam der Engel Schar, BWV 607

Trad. transcr. David Willcocks: Ding Dong! Merrily on high

Felix Mendelssohn, transcr. R. Jeffrey: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

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