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Edmund Rubbra (1901-1986) has become recognized as one of the leading British symphonic composers of the second half of the 20th century. In this recording, Gloriæ Dei Cantores brings the choral works of Edmund Rubbra to life. Tenebræ, Op. 72 consists of nine motet settings of the Gregorian Chant responsories for Maundy Thursday. Rubbra's expressive and powerful style conveys the depth of these texts that re-tell the passion of Christ. Also recorded are: Missa in Honorem Sancti Dominici, which is generally considered his choral masterpiece; Salutation, Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis Op. 65; and Festival Gloria Op. 94, which completes this landmark recording.
“The superior performance of the Rubbra choral works by the Gloriae Dei Cantores choir on this recording is a direct result of the meticulous attention given to two key elements inherent in choral music: intonation and textual clarity. And in every piece the expressive details, so carefully indicated by the composer, are sensitively and wonderfully realized.”—Music of Edmund Rubbra
"But whatever you do, I'd urge you to hear this fine American disc, especially if you don't know Rubbra's music. I have a number of the Gloriae Dei Cantores recordings in my collection already but this, I should say, is their finest achievement to date. They deserve accolades both for the enterprise of their choice of this repertoire and for their expertise in the execution of it. Recommended with enthusiasm."
John Quinn musicweb-international.com April 2003
"The Gloriae Dei Cantores singers, in some of their finest performances on disc, seem to have a special affinity for these often difficult pieces..."
"This is an essential disc for choral enthusiasts new to Rubbra...."
"The sound, from the ideal acoustics of Mechanics Hall..., is full, well-balanced, and respectful of detail."
David Vernier classicstoday.com April 2001
"Satisfying singing from the Cantores. You might hear more pinpoint control from one of the top-notch British choirs, but maybe not the heart-and this is definitely music from the heart."
Philip Greenfield American Record Guide November/December 1997
"Conductor Patterson (and engineer Joseph Chilorio) achieve excellent balances and blend."
"The Gloriae Dei Cantores disc is a treasurable one. ...highly recommended to devotees of the composer and to all with an interest in sacred choral music."
Andrew Quint Fanfare March/April 1999
"What a joy! At last a CD entirely devoted to Rubbra's choral music, and on the whole I can say that it is worth the wait."
"To sum up then, this American choir have done us a big favour in recording this music so beautifully. They have a fine controlled tone and the balance is superb."
Gary Higginson British Music Review March 1998
"...the performances are uniformly excellent. The recordings were made in the Mechanics Hall, Worcester, MA and are particularly well balanced in a most suitable acoustic."
"An excellent CD."
International Record Review July/August 2006
"Committed performances,...set in an ideal ambience."
Richard Whitehouse Gramophone July 1998
Gloriæ Dei Cantores
performs these pieces beautifully and with reverence, thereby saving from
short memories the music of a man that mattered. . . Rubbra's music has its
place if for no other reason than he composed it to be heard. While religion
and matters spiritual may be anathema in many cultural quarters, we ignore
them at our peril. This is music that is part of our historical context,
justifying its place in the catalog. Rubbra should be honored for his effort.
C. Michael Bailey All About Jazz May 2018