Locus Iste

Locus Iste

Director of Music: 
Andrew Nethsingha
Organ Scholar: 
Glen Dempsey
Release date: 
April 2019
  • Laura van der Heijden (cello)
  • William Buttery, Lewis Cobb (treble)
  • Daniel Brown (counter tenor)
  • Gopal Kambo (tenor)
  • James Adams, Piers Kennedy (bass)
Record label: 
St John's Cambridge/Signum
Catalogue number: 
Editor's Choice
July 2019

Locus Iste is the 100th recording by the Choir of St. John's College, Cambridge and marks the 150th anniversary of the consecration of St John's College Chapel.

The fifteen tracks reflect the past 150 years of choral music, carefully selected by Director of Music Andrew Nethsingha to mark each of the ten-year periods since the Chapel's Consecration in 1869.

Favourites of the Anglican choral tradition such as Finzi's 'God is Gone Up' and Parry's 'Blest pair of sirens' are joined by a new commission by Giles Swayne. The Choir is also joined by cellist and current St John's College student Laura Van Der Heijden, who won the BBC Young Musician of the Year Competition in 2012.

Andrew Nethsingha, Director of Music, says: "We are excited to be releasing the choir’s 100th album, 60 years after the Choir’s first LP for the Argo label. This new recording celebrates 150 years since the consecration of the College Chapel and contains 15 contrasting pieces across that 150 year period.”

*indicates world premiere recording

Track list

  1. Faire is the heaven (William Harris)
  2. Sing my soul, His wondrous love (Ned Rorem)
  3. God is gone up (Gerald Finzi)
  4. Hymn to the Virgin (Benjamin Britten)
  5. Justorum animae (Charles V. Stanford)
  6. The Lamb (John Tavener)
  7. Seek him that maketh the seven stars (Jonathan Dove)
  8. Salve Regina (Francis Poulenc)
  9. Jesu, grant me this, I pray* (Christopher Robinson)
  10. O vos omnes* (Alex Woolf)
  11. Jubilate in C (Benjamin Britten)
  12. Locus iste (Anton Bruckner)
  13. Adam lay ibounden* (Giles Swayne)
  14. Cherubic Hymn (Sergei Rachmaninoff)
  15. Blest pair of sirens (Hubert Parry)


This disc really soars, startling the ear into ecstasy with the sudden release of Rachmaninov’s Cherubic Hymn, the ‘bright Seraphim’ of Parry’s Blest pair of sirens and the ‘triumphant shout’ of Finzi’s God is gone up... Hopefully it's a fanfare that will continue for another 150 years

Alexandra Coghlan, Gramophone

The choir’s fine blend, admirable ensemble and attention to text is always on display, enhanced by the chapel’s celebrated acoustic

Tony Way, Limelight

Beautifully captured

BBC Radio 3 Record Review

Beautifully recorded. If you enjoy choral music, this one is special

Wisconsin Public Radio

★★★★ A glint of sunlight, inspired and inspiring

BBC Music Magazine

Highly recommended

James Manheim, AllMusic

The voices are tight and perfectly blended

Simon Thompson, MusicWeb International

There are some polished performances under Andrew Nethsingha's direction

Ken Walton, The Scotsman

The Choir of St John's College continues to be one of the finest collegiate choirs in the world

Steven Whitehead, Cross Rhythms

The choir's very first chord gives a foretaste of great things to come, for the singers somewhow just melt into the music, with no sense of attach, but with sheer loveliness of tone and perfect balance of the voices

Timothy Storey, Cathedral Music

More about this release

Share this

Latest webcast

Recorded on
9 March 2024


A Meditation on the Passion of Christ is a service of music and readings reflecting on the Passion of Christ. This year the service features music by Byrd, Purcell, Weelkes and MacMillan, as well as the final piece of a triptych of works written for the choir by Joanna Marsh.

Latest news

Magnificat 4 includes two commissions written specially for the Choir of St John's College; Jonathan Dove's 2022 canticle setting St John's Service, and Judith Weir's 2011 service of the same name.

Winner of the 2008 Ivor Novello Award for classical music, Jonathan Dove CBE has composed a broad range of works and is one of the most successful British composers today. 

Jonathan was kind enough to share insights into his St John's Service, the compositional process, and what we can look forward to in the future.

The commitment, projection and natural energy of this choir have never failed to inspire me

Organists’ Review