Choral Evensong - 04 February 2017
This week's Choral Evensong features the music of Giles Swayne, Gustav Holst, and Henry Balfour Gardiner.
Giles Swayne (b. 1946) studied at Ampleforth College, Cambridge, and the Royal Academy of Music under the tuition of Harrison Birtwistle, Alan Bush and Nicholas Maw. His setting of the Magnificat was commissioned by Francis Grier for the Choir of Christ Church, Oxford, with the work being completed in 1982. The melodic content of the piece is heavily influenced by zulu warrior chant, something which Swayne observed during his visit to Senegal in 1981 to record the music of the Jola community.
Henry Balfour Gardiner (1877 - 1950) was a British musician, composer, and teacher. Between studying at Charter House school and New College, Oxford, Gardiner studied piano at the Hoch Conservatory in Frankfurt am Main. His best-known work Evening Hymn (1908), a setting of the compline hymn "Te lucis ante terminum", is a lush, romantic work for eight-part choir and organ, of dense harmonies; it is widely considered a classic of the English choral repertoire.