STEPHEN HOUGH (b.1961): Missa Mirabilis for Chorus and Orchestra, RALPH VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958): Dona nobis pacem for Soprano, Baritone, Chorus and Orchestra.

Catalogue Number: 05Q083

Label: Hyperion

Reference: CDA 68096

Format: CD

Price: $18.98

Description: Hough's Mass, originally written for Westminster cathedral, later rescored for the impressive sonorities of the large-scale forces heard here, is a deeply personal work, emotionally compelling - no doubt gaining something in this regard from the composer's 'miraculous' survival of a catastrophic road accident with the piece half-finished. Despite its modest proportions, the work is conceived on a grand scale, powerfully affirmative, with the introduction of a counterpoint of doubt in the opposing textures of the Credo, suggesting the human tendency to waver even in the midst of the most profound expression of faith. The idiom is very tonal, with Vaughan Williams and Britten unmistakable influences, and the piece gains in potency through its clearly defined dramatic arc from adoration through struggle to a blazing affirmation of faith and a final, peaceful resolution. Sarah Fox (soprano), Christopher Maltman (baritone), Colorado Symphony Chorus, Colorado Symphony; Andrew Litton.

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