℗ ℗ 2019 Winged Lion
 

An English Coronation, 1902-1953

Paul McCreesh, Gabrieli, Simon Russell Beale

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1
Coronation March, Op. 65
Edward Elgar; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
10:42
2
The King’s Herald
Herbert Howells; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
4:11
3
Rejoice Today with One Accord
Martin Luther; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
2:00
4
O Most Merciful
Charles Wood; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
1:46
5
Litany
Thomas Tallis; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
9:02
6
O God, Our Help in Ages Past
William Croft; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
3:50
Three Chorale Fantasias  
7
I. O God, Our Help in Ages Past
Hubert Parry; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Matthew Martin
5:00
Pomp and Circumstance Marches, Op. 39  
8
No. 1 in D Major
Edward Elgar; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
5:45
9
Entrance Fanfare
Ernest Bullock; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
0:54
10
I Was Glad
Hubert Parry; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
6:57
11
The Presentation, Fanfares and Acclamations
Ernest Bullock; Simon Russell Beale; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
2:10
12
The Administration and Signing of the Oath
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
1:31
13
O Hearken Thou, Op. 64
Edward Elgar; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
2:24
14
The Collect
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
1:40
15
Peter 2:13-17
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; David Clegg
1:00
16
Hear My Prayer, O Lord, Z. 15
Henry Purcell; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
2:26
17
Matthew 22:15
Anonymous; Willian Townend; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
1:48
Mass in G Minor  
18
Creed
Ralph Vaughan Williams; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
6:52
19
Come, Holy Ghost
Ernest Bullock; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
3:05
20
The Prayer over the Ampulla
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
1:00
21
Zadok the Priest, HWV 258
George Frideric Handel; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
5:13
22
The Anointing and Blessing
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
1:48
1
Prayers, Acclamations and Crowning Fanfare
Ernest Bullock; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale; Gabrieli
1:48
2
Confortare (Be strong and play the man)
Walter Parratt; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
1:15
3
The King Receives the Holy Bible
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
0:33
4
The Blessing of the King and People
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
1:37
5
The Exhortation
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
1:03
6
Rejoice in the Lord Alway
John Redford; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
2:43
7
I Will Not Leave You Comfortless
William Byrd; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
1:54
8
O Clap Your Hands Together
Orlando Gibbons; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
4:37
9
Thou Wilt Keep Him in Perfect Peace
Samuel Sebastian Wesley; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
3:20
10
Homage Fanfare and Acclamations
Ernest Bullock; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
2:01
11
All People That on Earth do Dwell (The Old Hundredth Psalm Tune)
Ralph Vaughan Williams; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
5:15
12
The Offertory Prayer and Prayer for the Church Militant
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
3:32
13
The Exhortation, General Confession and Absolution
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
3:20
14
The Preface
Anonymous; Simon Russell Beale; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
1:39
15
Sanctus
Ralph Vaughan Williams; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
2:45
16
The Prayer of Humble Access and Prayer of Consecration
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
2:46
17
O Taste and See
Ralph Vaughan Williams; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
1:49
18
The Lord’s Prayer
John Merbecke; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
1:29
19
The Post-Communion Prayer
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
1:28
20
‘Coronation’ Gloria in B flat
Charles Villiers Stanford; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
5:06
21
The Blessing
Anonymous; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh; Simon Russell Beale
1:03
22
Threefold Amen
Orlando Gibbons; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
1:04
23
Coronation Te Deum
William Walton; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
9:03
24
Recessional and National Anthem
David Matthews; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
10:11
25
Crown Imperial
William Walton; Gabrieli; Paul McCreesh
6:27
Total Playing Time    2:38:52
There can be few ceremonies as spectacular as an English coronation. Over the centuries a rich liturgy and ceremonial rite have been adorned with an impressive musical repertoire. The four twentieth-century coronations (Edward VII in 1902, George V in 1911, George VI in 1937 and Elizabeth II in 1953) were lavish occasions. Both Roy Strong (Coronation, HarperCollins Publishers 2005) and Matthias Range (Music and Ceremonial at British Coronations, Cambridge University Press 2012) characterize these ceremonies as ‘the marriage of tradition and innovation’. Musically this is reflected in numerous commissioned pieces, alongside a desire to celebrate the glories of British music of the past.

Westminster Abbey was closed for several months whilst carpenters erected huge galleries to accommodate the nearly 8,000 invited guests, as well as a large, raised podium under the crossing, known as the ‘Theatre’. Music and ceremony were slavishly rehearsed over many days. Large choirs of around 400 voices (including almost 200 choirboys) were assembled from all over the country, along with a few representatives of the foreign ‘Dominions’, and placed in special galleries around the choir stalls, led by three sub-conductors. Orchestras comprising the finest musicians in the land occupied the organ gallery above the screen, while massed military trumpets punctuated the ceremony with fanfares, and occasionally joined the concerted music. All four coronations are particularly well documented. Novello published vocal scores of all the music and every musician was listed in The Musical Times. Additionally, the BBC recorded the 1937 coronation for radio and that of 1953 for television.

This recording is a selection of the very best music from all these ceremonies, assembled into a fine liturgical structure. For the ‘new’ music of the first half of the twentieth century, the aim has been to assimilate period style, including the use of instruments of the time, but it has not been felt appropriate to try to recreate mid-twentieth-century performance style for earlier music. Likewise, Gordon Jacob’s arrangements of Parry and Handel, deemed suitable in 1937 and 1953, have been abandoned in favour of Parry’s original orchestration and, for Handel, a more generic twenty-first-century ‘baroque’ style, including natural trumpets, albeit with a rather impressive romantic organ at the heart of the ensemble. The various renaissance and baroque anthems and motets included are not necessarily performed at the pitches nor in the voice configurations heard in the coronations; nor is any attempt made to emulate the clipped ecclesiastical spoken style of the period, so memorably preserved on recordings of 1937 and 1953.
96 kHz / 24-bit PCM – Signum Records Studio Masters

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