HAVPCD370 – Follow the Star – Wakefield Cathedral Choir
HAVPCD370 – Follow the Star
This latest CD release by the choir of Wakefield Cathedral seeks to bring to public attention some of the lesser known and unusual compositions and arrangements of the Christmas repertoire, whilst including favourite melodies every listener will enjoy. The tracks take the form of a journey through Advent to the birth of Christ, ending with the visit of the Magi at the Epiphany.
Many of the tracks are composed or arranged by contemporary composers, including ‘O leave your sheep’ by Wakefield old chorister, Kenneth Leighton. Perhaps of particular interest is the treble voices arrangement of “People look East” by Paul Trepte, and the Spanish Carol ‘Riu riu chiu’ by Mateo Flecha. Mack Wilberg’s playful arrangement of ‘Ding dong merrily on high’ has gained in popularity since it was performed during Carols from Kings in 2009, but has rarely been recorded.
The CD displays well the independent top lines of boy and girl choristers, gloriously bringing them together for some tracks, and there is also the opportunity to hear two contrasting organ works,“Epiphanie” by Gaston Litaize being particularly little known. Throughout the disc however, the organists manage to extract many of the outstanding and varied colours from the Cathedral’s Compton organ.
This recording marks the first collaboration on CD of the new music department in Wakefield Cathedral, Simon Earl and Thomas Moore having been appointed to their respective positions in January 2011.