In Terra Pax: A Christmas Anthology

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A Sublime Collection of English Choral Christmas Music

‘… an outstanding account of one of the minor masterpieces of 20th-century English music’ (The Guardian)

In Terra Pax: a Christmas Anthology is a collection of pieces that are found slightly off the well-trodden path, and yet feel as familiar as Christmas itself. This recording has been widely praised (see reviews below) and reached no. 2 in the Gramophone classical chart.

HOLST Christmas Day
JOUBERT There is no rose
MATHIAS Sir Christèmas, A babe is born
HOWELLS Here is the little door, A spotless Rose
FINZI In terra pax – Christmas scene
WARLOCK Three carols
LEIGHTON A hymn of the Nativity
RUTTER What sweeter music
GARDNER Tomorrow shall be my dancing day
VAUGHAN WILLIAMS Winter (Folk songs of the four seasons)

Julia Doyle – soprano
Roderick Williams – baritone
Mark Williams – organ and piano
City of London Choir
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Hilary Davan Wetton – conductor

Recorded in The Lighthouse, Poole and at St Paul’s Girls’ School, Hammersmith. Released November 2009 (Naxos 8.572102)

For further details please see the Naxos site:

Disc information
News

 

REVIEWS
American Record Guide November 2010

“The choir sings with nimbleness and grace… This Christmas if you’re looking for something that goes beyond the many fine collections of carols, don’t overlook this.’

 

BBC Music Magazine Christmas 2009

“The gem here is Finzi’s In terra pax… Leighton’s unaccompanied‘A Hymn of the Nativity‘ is another stand-out item in this valuable anthology.’

 

Classic FM Magazine Christmas 2009
(Four and a half Stars)

‘A welcome resurrection of under-performed British gems, sung and played with great warmth.’

 

Daily Mail December 2009
(Four Stars)

‘That a mixed choir can challenge our great boys’ choirs at Christmas is proved by this enterprising anthology.’
Tully Potter

 

Daily Telegraph December 2009

‘This enchanting disc delves widely and deeply into the repertoire of English Christmas music and comes up with some rewarding finds among some other items that have become staples… all, deservedly, timeless classics, and all are performed here by the City of London Choir with freshness, bloom, attentive diction and a palpable heart… Hilary Davan Wetton throughout draws a winning spectrum of expression from his forces, be it voiced pensively or festively.’
Geoffrey Norris

 

Financial Times December 2009
(Four Stars)

‘The music [Finzi’s In Terra Pax], capturing a sense of celestial wonder amid the pastoral lyricism, is splendidly brought to life by the excellent City of London Choir and Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, with soprano Julia Doyle and baritone Roderick Williams.’
Andrew Clark

 

The Guardian December
(Four Stars)

‘… an outstanding account of one of the minor masterpieces of 20th-century English music [Finzi’s In Terra Pax].’
Andrew Clements

 

Gramophone December 2009

‘The centrepiece, though, is Finzi’s ‘Christmas scene’ In terra pax, which finds choir, orchestra and soloists Julia Doyle and Roderick Williams on fine form.’
David Threasher

 

International Record Review December 2009

‘Davan Wetton finds that unique blend of the eternal and the everyday that walks through Finzi’s most accomplished scores.’
Christopher Cook

 

Liverpool Daily Post November 2009

‘At budget price, this [CD] is a real winner.’
Peter Spaull

 

Mail on Sunday December 2009
(Five Stars)
‘Hilary Davan Wetton, a natural successor to Richard Hickox in choral repertory… draws committed performances from his soloists, Julia Doyle and Roderick Williams, the City of London Choir and, in most of the items, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.’
David Mellor

 

On-line reviews

Albion Magazine Online Spring 2010
(Specially Commended)

‘Christmas may have been and gone, but this disc of Christmas music is so superb that it can be enjoyed all year round.’

 

Classics Today November 2009 
(Artistic Quality 9/10, Sound Quality 9/10)

‘You can’t help but be caught up in the joyful spirit that’s apparent throughout all the performances on this disc, from the soloists and accompanists to the choir and orchestra. And while that alone is reason enough to own this, you really shouldn’t miss the Leighton or the very rarely-recorded In terra pax, in this now-reference version of the work.’
David Vernier

 

Cross Rhythms (Rating: 9/10)

‘… the City Of London Choir, one of the very best amateur choirs in the country.’
Steven Whitehead

 

David’s Review Corner November 2009

‘Sit back and enjoy a gentle and genial Christmas as seen through the eyes of ten 20th century British composers, and at the same time greet rediscovered choral jewels.’
David Denton

 

Musicweb International

‘The Vaughan Williams items are predictably fun. They are folksong based and so you may well recognise some of the melodies from other contexts. They are beautifully harmonised (for the choir) and scored (for the orchestra) and the final carol makes a rousing, wholly satisfying conclusion to the disc.’
Simon Thompson