John Sheppard - Gaude, gaude, gaude Maria (Sacred Choral Works) | Chandos - Chaconne CHSA0401

John Sheppard - Gaude, gaude, gaude Maria (Sacred Choral Works)

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Label: Chandos - Chaconne

Cat No: CHSA0401

Format: SACD

Number of Discs: 1

Genre: Vocal/Choral

Release Date: 4th November 2013



Not much is known about the English composer John Sheppard. When he was born, and where he grew up, is lost to history but most scholars place his birth at somewhere between 1515 and 1520. This places him in one of the most turbulent periods in English church history, something that can be heard on this disc in the wide stylistic range he used in order to adapt to the quickly changing politics of the day.

The sophisticated six part texture of Gaude, gaude, gaude Maria suggests the influence of Queen Mary who encouraged elaborate sacred composition. It is one of Sheppardís most thrilling and ambitious works. On the other hand, Christ rising again reflects Thomas Cranmerís insistence on musical simplicity but demonstrates the genius with which Sheppard explores the limits of expressive power with only the most restricted means.

The works are performed by the Choir of St Johnís College, Cambridge under the directorship of Andrew Nethsingha. One of the finest men and boys choirs in the world, it is known and loved by millions from its recordings, broadcasts and concert tours. The choir has been a cornerstone of the great English choral tradition since the 1670s and is recognised for its distinctive, rich and expressive sound.

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