John Sheppard (c1515 – 1558)
Media vita, Gaude, gaude, gaude Maria, Missa Cantate
Westminster Cathedral Choir, Martin Baker
Hyperion Records CDA68187 @ £14.25*
“Westminster Cathedral Choir, under Martin Baker, invest this music, magnificently sung, with immense dignity as it slowly unfolds to reveal Sheppard’s unique sound world.” The Observer
“Westminster match the monumentality of (Media vita) own structure in a spacious, architectural performance whose physical heft is balanced by a blend so smudgy-soft that the impression is of hundreds of voices all sharing in this musical prayer …..It’s quite possible that 2017 marks Sheppard’s 500th anniversary year. It’s hard to think of a better birthday-present than this outstanding recording of three of his finest works.” Gramophone, August 2017
About the CD ….
Even by the standards of a time and place “Tudor England” in which masterpieces of choral polyphony appear to have been virtually an everyday occurrence, there is something uniquely and intensely compelling about the surviving works of John Sheppard. This is music designed to be sung by liturgical professionals, and none rise to its demands quite like Westminster Cathedral Choir.
Hyperion Records CDA68187 @£14.25*