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Imogen Holst: Choral Works (Clare College, Cambridge)


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Biography

Graham Ross is Director of Music and Fellow of Clare College, Cambridge. Responsible for all practical music-making in the College, he builds on and seeks to enhance the continued excellence of musicianship of Clare’s instrumentalists, composers, conductors, and the internationally-renowned Chapel Choir. He continues to broaden the liturgical repertoire by commissioning new music, and to ... Read more in Amazon's Choir of Clare College, Cambridge Store

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Product details

  • Conductor: Graham Ross
  • Composer: Imogen Holst
  • Audio CD (27 Aug. 2012)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: harmonia mundi
  • ASIN: B007X98RFQ
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 92,132 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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. Mass in A Minor: I. KyrieChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 3:28£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Mass in A Minor: II. GloriaChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 3:31£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Mass in A Minor: III. CredoChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 5:37£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Mass in A Minor: IV. Sanctus - BenedictusChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 4:40£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Mass in A Minor: V. Agnus DeiChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 3:24£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. A Hymne to ChristChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 2:29£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Three Psalms: I. Psalm 80, Give ear, O shepherd of IsraelChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 7:26£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Three Psalms: II. Psalm 56, Be merciful unto me, O GodChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 5:00£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. Three Psalms: III. Psalm 91, He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most HighChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 3:41£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow: I. Welcome Joy and Welcome SorrowChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 1:41£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen11. Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow: II. TeignmouthChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 1:32£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen12. Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow: III. Over the Hill and over the DaleChoir of Clare College, Cambridge0:58£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen13. Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow: IV. O sorrowChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 2:57£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen14. Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow: V. LullabyChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 2:13£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen15. Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow: VI. Shed no tearChoir of Clare College, Cambridge 1:34£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen16. Hallo my fancy, whither wilt thou go?Choir of Clare College, Cambridge 6:31£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen17. Rejoice in the Lamb (Festival Cantata): I. Rejoice in God, O ye TonguesImogen Holst 3:44£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen18. Rejoice in the Lamb (Festival Cantata): II. For I will consider my Cat JeoffryImogen Holst 1:59£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen19. Rejoice in the Lamb (Festival Cantata): III. For the Mouse is a creature of great personal valourImogen Holst0:46£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen20. Rejoice in the Lamb (Festival Cantata): IV. For the flowers are great blessingsImogen Holst 2:02£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen21. Rejoice in the Lamb (Festival Cantata): V. For I am under the same accusation with my SaviourImogen Holst 2:38£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen22. Rejoice in the Lamb (Festival Cantata): VI. For H is a spirit and therefore he is GodImogen Holst 1:01£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen23. Rejoice in the Lamb (Festival Cantata): VII. For the instruments are by their rhimesImogen Holst 2:18£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen24. Rejoice In The Lamb (Festival Cantata): VIII. Hallelujah From The Heart Of GodImogen Holst 1:14£0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Description

Product Description

HMF 907576; HARMONIA MUNDI - Francia; Classica vocale

Review

this latest of recent recordings of her music indicates, yet again, just how fine her composing talent was ... these performances are poised, immaculate **** --Malcolm Hayes, BBC Music Magazine, September 2012

These world premiere recordings, finely sung by Clare College Choir, remind us how neglected her own compositions, forced into second place by other duties, have been … The beautiful Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow, for female voices and harp, gives an insight into her own, softly nuanced, pioneering voice. --Fiona Maddocks, The Observer 25 August 2012

Her Mass in A Minor of 1927, immaculately crafted, betrays influences of her teachers Vaughan Williams, Howells and Dyson … The Clare choir brings it all keenly to life.**** --Geoffrey Norris, Daily Telegraph 25 August 2012

This impressive new recording from the Choir of Clare College, Cambridge under Graham Ross is a sure fire way of piquing wider interest. Like Britten, Holst shows great skill in setting English poetry to music, to which Ross and his choir respond with a rich and mature sound. --Gavin Plumley, Entartete Musik (blog) 2 October 2012

Her Mass in A Minor of 1927, immaculately crafted, betrays influences of her teachers Vaughan Williams, Howells and Dyson … The Clare choir brings it all keenly to life.**** --Geoffrey Norris, Daily Telegraph 25 August 2012

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Entartete Musik on 2 Oct. 2012
Format: Audio CD
Hiding in the shadow of her father Gustav Holst and then her boss Benjamin Britten, Imogen Holst's own music is yet to find its feet within the repertoire. But this impressive new recording from the Choir of Clare College, Cambridge under Graham Ross is a sure fire way of piquing wider interest. Like Britten, Holst shows great skill in setting English poetry to music, to which Ross and his choir respond with a rich and mature sound.

Despite later glories, Holst's early work feels a little derivative. Her austere 1927 Mass in A minor is notably anchored to the model of Vaughan Williams' G minor work. Yet neither Ross nor his singers acknowledges the debt in their resolutely committed performance. A suitably fragile Kyrie gives way to more strident later movements, as individual voices tell before the ensemble reveals a welcome sense of authority.

Holst hits her stride with her Three Psalms of 1943. Responding colourfully to these biblical texts, while never slavish to their twists and turns, Ross draws a dramatic reading from his choir. The Dmitri Ensemble adds a particularly intense string sound. Less convincing is the late 'Hallo my fancy, whither wilt thou go?' Again, the choir rises to the challenge, imbuing each phrase with piquancy, but it cannot rescue a rather contrived work.

By far the best music on the disc is Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow, a 1950 sequence of Keats settings for women's voices and harp. Tanya Houghton provides spirited ebb and flow in the accompaniment, while the upper voices of Clare Choir colour Keats's vibrant text. Similarly successful is Holst's orchestration of Britten's Rejoice in the Lamb. Lending this quixotic work a broader grin by far, Ross delivers winning terpsichorean bounce.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By S. H. Smith on 30 Aug. 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Imogen Holst (1907-84) had a varied and busy musical career which included teaching, serving as Benjamin Britten's assistant, and promoting her father's music. Although her hectic schedule left her little time for composition she did, in fact, compose at intervals throughout her life. A selection of her chamber music, recorded by Court Lane Music in 2008, proved to be a revelation, so this new Harmonia Mundi disc of some of her choral works is to be welcomed. Having lived under the shadow of a famous father has perhaps led some to expect a watered-down version of his music, but this is far from the truth. She was very much a composer in her own right, and developed her own distinctive style as she matured.

The first work here, the Mass of 1927, was written under the guidance of Vaughan Williams when Imogen was just twenty years old, and shows clear signs of the master's influence, particularly echoing his own Mass written just five years before. Still, it is none the worse for that, and Holst's confident handling of the unaccompanied choir is everywhere in evidence.

"A Hymne to Christ" (1940), setting a text by John Donne, is also for unaccompanied choir, but is a product of Holst's greater maturity, showing some advance on the early Mass. In the Three Psalms (1943) the mixed chorus is joined by a chamber orchestra (strings only). There is plenty of invention in the choral writing, and the string accompaniment is delicate and restrained, always underpinning, never swamping, the choral line.

"Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow" (1950) is a group of six settings of John Keats' poetry.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By TJJ on 23 Nov. 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I was not even aware that Imogen Holst had composed anything, but having been introduced to her at a local recorded music club I fell for this immediately. A must for anyone who feels that women composers are very under-represented !- and i'm a chap !
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Excellent album of Imogen Holst works, plus one arrangement by her of Britten 1 Sept. 2013
By G.C. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Imogen Holst (1907-1984), the daughter and only child of Gustav Holst, was noted in her time as a custodian of her father's music, an assistant and amanuensis to Benjamin Britten, and an artistic director of Britten's Aldeburgh Festival. But she was also a composer in her own right, and this CD is the closest recording anywhere to an all-Imogen Holst album. The one exception to that rule is her arrangement of Benjamin Britten's cantata "Rejoice in the Lamb" for chorus and chamber orchestra, from the chorus and organ original. The bulk of the album is devoted to five Imogen Holst works, covering what appears to be the whole of her musical career, as follows:

1. Mass in a (1927)
2. A Hymne to Christ (1940)
3. Three Psalms (1943)
4. Welcome Joy and Welcome Sorrow (1950)
5. Hallo my fancy, whither wilt thou go? (1972)

The Mass in a, "A Hymne to Christ" and "Hallo my fancy..." are works for chorus alone. "Three Psalms" features instrumental accompaniment along with the chorus, while a harpist joins the chorus in "Welcome Joy....".

All of Imogen Holst's works are well crafted and pleasant to listen to, easy on the ear in standard tonal harmonic idiom. However, IMHO, her works lack the striking melodies that one finds more often in her father's compositions, as well as Britten's. Incidentally, "Hallo my fancy...." was recently given its first performance at The Proms at Cadogan Hall, the first Imogen Holst work ever given at The Proms.

The performers on this album, the Choir of Clare College, Cambridge, the Dmitri Ensemble, and the soloists drawn from each ensemble, do an excellent job throughout. So even though this album doesn't necessarily reveal any neglected masterpieces, the musicians do Imogen Holst proud on this album, and make this album worth a 5-star rating. Those interested in exploring off the beaten path of British music, and who want to get a fuller picture of Imogen Holst, need not hesitate here. This album is most certainly worth a listen, and all praise to harmonia mundi for bankrolling this album.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
In Dad's Shadow 17 Feb. 2013
By K. M. - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Poor Imogen Holst spend most of her musical life in her father's shadow although she was a very talented musician in her own right. These works attest to her talent and they are well performed by the good folks at Claire College
Rare works displaying a largely ignored talent. 21 Sept. 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Imogen Holst was a talented and skillful composer, as these performances of choral works demonstrate. They are in a mildly dissonant mid-20th century style, and achieve some nice vocal effects. The performances are predictably excellent.
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