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Panufnik: Westminster Mass

Herbert Howells , William Mathias , Colin Mawby , Roxanna Panufnik , James O'Donnell , et al. Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
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Product details

  • Orchestra: Westminster Cathedral Choir, City of London Sinfonia
  • Conductor: James O'Donnell
  • Composer: Herbert Howells, William Mathias, Colin Mawby, Roxanna Panufnik
  • Audio CD (1 Jan 2008)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Teldec
  • ASIN: B00002DE1K
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 270,074 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Ave Verum Corpus
2. The Doctrine Of Wisdom
3. Westminster Mass: Kyrie
4. Westminster Mass: Gloria
5. Westminster Mass: Deus, Deus Meus - Timothy Lacy
6. Westminster Mass: Sanctus And Benedictus
7. Westminster Mass: Memorial Acclamation
8. Westminster Mass: Amen
9. Westminster Mass: Agnus Dei
10. Funeral Ikos
11. Missa In Honorem Sancti Dominici: Kyrie
12. Missa In Honorem Sancti Dominici: Gloria
13. Missa In Honorem Sancti Dominici: Credo
14. Missa In Honorem Sancti Dominici: Sanctus
15. Missa In Honorem Sancti Dominici: Benedictus
16. Missa In Honorem Sancti Dominici: Agnus Dei
17. The Beatitudes
18. Salve Regina - Timothy Lacy

Product Description

Amazon.co.uk Review

Daughter of distinguished Polish composer Andrzej Panufnik, Roxanna Panufnik (b. 1968) was commissioned to compose the Westminster Mass to celebrate the 75th birthday of Cardinal Basil Hume in 1998 who, until his death in June 1999, was the leader of the Roman Catholic community in Britain. Despite its specific origin, Panufnik has written her Mass with a view to having it performed in a variety of contexts. So, for example, the vocal writing is pitched deliberately within the limits of amateur choirs, and alternative orchestrations exist--for organ or harp accompaniment--allowing for flexibility in performance. As recorded here it's an attractive and accessible work with easily digestible tunes that don't come across as facile or pall on repeated listening. Particularly striking is the celebratory "Sanctus" (the texts are in English) with its joyous repetition of "Hosanna". The other lengthy work on the disc is Rubbra's Missa in honorem Sancti Dominici, a four-part a cappella setting written in 1948 which employs modern harmonies but simultaneously looks back over its shoulder at the choral works of Tallis and Byrd. None of the other pieces on the album are without interest, but undoubtedly the selling point is Panufnik's Mass, and it's that piece the listener will return to most often. The Westminster Cathedral choir, singing on home ground, are persuasively eloquent throughout. --Mark Walker

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just Awesome 6 May 2002
By A Customer
This cd is simply amazing. The Colin Mawby 'Ave Verum' is spine tingling, as is the Rubbra mass. Even without the other pieces this cd would be worth buying, yet all the other pieces are a valuable addition to anyone's collection.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Seven stars! 5 Sep 2009
This disk is a real find. Although centred around Westminster Abbey (and the interests of the late Cardinal Hume) it is surprisingly catholic in the breadth of its reach across liturgical and musical traditions. I can't imagine tiring of it and only hope it can be restored to the catalogue exactly as it appears here. The performances and the recording have a presence that is complemented by the care that has gone into the exemplary booklet - including photographs of all seven composers whose works are its 'stars'. Other reviewers' praise here seems fully deserved.

None of the 20th century compositions here, even the haunting Tavener 'Funeral Ikos', have been exactly over-represented on other CDs. For instance, the William Mathias work ('Doctrine of Wisdom') has an excellent US recording that is unobtainable in the UK and it is omitted from the recent Hyperion collection of his choral pieces. But the whole sequence on this disk is much more than its individual parts. If you can't obtain this CD at a reasonable price now, then petition Teldec to reissue it soon!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Watch out for Roxanna 23 Feb 2000
Verified Purchase
Some years ago, Roxanna Panufnik presented Composer of the Week on Radio 3 - the subject was, of course, her father. She spoke in the most moving way of her relationship with him and of his last illness. She made a big impression on me as a human being and I am delighted that her Westminster Mass has been recorded.
It is a very accessible work, often beautiful. The choir is sometimes accompanied by bells, or a harp, or a viola - then the full orchestra comes in - the texture being feather-light then much more dense, according to her expressive needs. Watch out for Roxanna.
Gavin Bullock
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5.0 out of 5 stars SUBLIME MUSIC FROM WESTMINSTER 1 Dec 2013
Verified Purchase
ALTHOUGH I AN NOT A CATHOLIC OR SUPPORT ANY MAINSTREAM RELIGON I TAKE AN INTEREST IN THE MUSIC OF THE CHOIR AS I HAVE A FLAT A STONES THROW AWAY FRM THE CATHEDRAL AND ROXANNES FATHERS MUSIC IS WELL KNOWN TO ME RECOMMENDED CD
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worthy farewell to a musical era 16 Feb 2000
By Mark Swinton - Published on Amazon.com
I use the above turn of phrase simply because this disc does indeed mark the end of an era. It is the last recording of the Westminster Cathedral Choir under the direction of James O'Donnell, now of Westminster Abbey (although I find it rather odd that it is under the Teldec label - usually, the Westminster Choir records for Hyperion!)
O'Donnell, like his forebears Richard Terry and George Malcolm amongst others, has maintained the strong combination of ancient and modern music at the heart of worship in the Cathedral, and on this recording we see some of the finest examples of recent commissions for the choir (as well as some other contemporary gems). Some moments in the title work come across as perhaps a little 'cheesy', but on the whole it is stylish, distinctive and sensitively rendered. It certainly makes out Roxanna Panufnik to be a competent and thoughtful composer, although I'm not completely sure about her claims that it is approachable by amateur groups...
The remainder of the disc is also beautifully executed, opening with a special re-arrangement of Colin Mawby's sentimental but effective "Ave Verum" and exploring a Mass by Edmund Rubbra as well as works commissioned from Herbert Howells ("Salve Regina," heart-wrenchingly written and performed) and William Mathias ("The Doctrine of Wisdom," which must surely be one of that composer's best liturgical works ever). It is also wonderful - indeed long-overdue! - to hear Arvo Part and John Tavener being sung by this choir: It would be hard to find a more technically flawless rendition of "The Beatitudes" or a more moving and gripping rendition of "Funeral Ikos" than those recorded here. Indeed, throughout the whole disc, O'Donnell's scholarly readings coupled with the distinctive sound of the choir make for a listening experience of the highest standard, and one worth purchasing for any or all of the works thereon.
This CD is dedicated to the memory of Cardinal Basil Hulme, Archbishop of Westminster and tireless champion of the musical standards there. It is a fitting tribute, and I am sure that the exceptional leadership of James O'Donnell will be much missed at Westminster Cathedral.
5.0 out of 5 stars SUBLIME 1 Dec 2013
By michael chisholm - Published on Amazon.com
ALTHOUGH I AM NOT A CATHOLIC OR SUPPORT ANY RELIGON I HAVE A FLAT A STONES THROW FRM WESTMINSTER CATHEDRAL SO I TAKE AN INTEREST IN THE AREA .THE CATHEDRAL WAS BUILT ON THE SITE OF A FORMER PRISON/ASYLUM NOT SURE WHICH IS MORE APPROPIATE.THE MUSIC IS SUBLIME AND I TAKE A KEEN INTEREST IN THIS GIRLS WORK AS HER FATHER IS KNOWN TO ME
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Westminster Mass CD 30 Oct 2008
By Linda Coker - Published on Amazon.com
Fantastic CD! Great sound and beautiful music! Just the thing to relax with. Will certainly buy from this seller again. AAA+++!!!! :)
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