Alexander Campkin: The Crimson Sun
Apollo5

(I like to turn my volume up for this one … the “Gloria in excelsis Deo” is just so gorgeous!)

When the crimson sun had set
Low behind the wintry sea,
On the bright and cold midnight
Burst a sound of heavenly glee:

Gloria in excelsis Deo

Where the manger crib is laid,
In the city fair and free,
Hand in hand, this shepherds band
Worship Christ on bended knee.

Gloria in excelsis Deo

Join with us in welcome song,
Ye who in Christ’s Home abide,
Sing the Love of God above,
Shown at happy Christmas-tide.

Gloria in excelsis Deo

Rev George P Grantham (1833-1909)

Apollo5 is based in London at the Voces8 Centre and is part of the Voces8 Foundation – our aim is to inspire people through music with an innovative education outreach programme alongside a busy schedule of concert performances around the world.

Apollo5:
Penelope Appleyard
Clare Stewart
Joshua Cooter
Oliver Martin-Smith
Greg Link

Merry Christmas!

A King’s Christmas, 2019
University of King’s College Chapel Choir; Paul Halley, Director

As I’m sure most people know, the words are from the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem “Christmas Bells”.

Doxology Vocal Ensemble || www.sbts.edu/doxology
Arranged by Cliff Duren

Have you ever heard of the National Open Youth Orchestra? I hadn’t. Until yesterday. I was listening to a work by the computer Alexander Campkin, a name new to me as well, so I looked him up and learned about this group. Direct from the YouTube page is an explanation of the group:

The National Open Youth Orchestra is the world’s first disabled-led national youth ensemble. It’s a pioneering orchestra where 11-25 year-old talented young disabled musicians and non-disabled musicians rehearse and perform together.

And I’m so very moved and uplifted. So many get told they can’t play an instrument because of a disability. I had a student that, had her parents told me about her issue prior to teaching, I would have turned away (shame on me!). I just didn’t see how she could manage an embouchure when I first met her, but not willing to say something when she arrived at my door we just began lessons. (Never did her parents tell me anything about it, and only when she was with me for a number of years did I feel she and I were comfortable enough with each other to talk about it.)

That student ended up being a very good oboist. Her disability didn’t hinder her … she just formed her embouchure a bit differently.

Don’t tell a student they can’t do something until you know it is absolutely impossible. Even then, perhaps don’t say it: let them figure things out! Young people can do amazing things!

Here the composer talks about his own situation and the work:

And here is the work:

Maybe at some point we’ll look back at YouTube videos and identify when they were created by masks or no masks, and distance between musicians. In this case I’m assuming they were at a point when things seemed safer, but not quite safe enough to be near each other. (Where I work anyone who can be masked is still to be masked, and those of us who can’t are frequently tested. Until that changes I have learned that I have to be quite diligent about safety.)

VOCES8: ‘Sanctus’ from Fauré’s Requiem

Fourth Sunday in Advent

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel, arr. Taylor Scott Davis
VOCES8, Apollo5, VOCES8 Foundation Choir & Orchestra; Barnaby Smith, Conductor

Third Sunday in Advent

Veni, Veni Emmanuel, arr. Philip Lawson
The Gesualdo Six; Owain Park, Conductor

Second Sunday in Advent

O Come O Come Emmanuel, arr. Alice Parker & Robert Shaw
Northern Lights Chorale; Tonya Barnes, Conductor