Saturday, March 27, 2010

Four Recordings of the Choir of the London Oratory

When it comes to renaissance polyphony, most are no doubt familiar with the recordings which are available for purchase from such excellent groups as The Tallis Scholars or The Sixteen; recordings which certainly deserve our interest and provide much edification. But I was particularly pleased to be made aware of some recordings from the famed choir of the London Oratory -- more popularly known as the Brompton Oratory.

For those who have been to the London Oratory, you will no doubt know of their renown in the area of the sacred liturgy -- and if you have not been, you will probably at least know it by reputation. Their approach to the liturgical rites and the beauty of the sacred architecture of the Oratory church itself is also matched by the calibre of the choral tradition found therein.

Four of their recordings were recently sent to me.

One which particularly caught my attention was Vexilla Regis Prodeunt: Music for Holy Week and Easter. As I write, I am listening to this particular recording, which was recorded in 2006 at St. Alban's Church in London, under the direction of Patrick Russill, the Director of Music at the London Oratory. The quality of the recording itself and the execution of the music is superb.

The music is sung with great clarity and precision and, wonderfully, takes one sequentially through selections of Holy Week, with musical selections for Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, the Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday. (See here)

While Holy Week is already upon us, these selections would certainly make for good listening throughout the Easter Season and the rest of the year as well.

In addition to this particular recording, here are three others from the London Oratory choir which may pique your interest; two of Marian inspiration and another, the Blessed Sacrament. (Click each CD cover for more information about the CD.)

If you enjoy Gregorian chant and particularly renaissance polyphony, you will most certainly want to add these CD's to your collection. In so doing, you will be showing your support for the liturgical pursuits of the London Oratory, partaking in a taste of their liturgical life, and further giving your financial support to a good cause, Aid to the Church in Need, who offer support to the faithful in areas of oppression or impoverishment.

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You may also wish to browse some of the other recordings made available through Aid to the Church in Need: Aid to the Church in Need Shop.

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