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CHAN 241-31M
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2 for 1 Logo
CHAN 241-31
(multiple CD Set)

Parry: The Soul's Ransom/ The Lotos-Eaters/Blest pair of Sirens/Invocation to Music

The Classical Shop
release date: February 2006

Originally recorded in 2005


London Philharmonic Orchestra


Matthias Bamert


Richard Hickox

David Wilson-Johnson


Brian Rayner Cook


Della Jones


Anne Dawson


Arthur Davies



Watford Town Hall

Blackheath Halls, London

All Saints' Church, Tooting, London


Brian Couzens


Ralph Couzens

Janet Middlebrook

(Assistant: Blest pair of Sirens, I was glad)

Ben Connellan

(other works)

Record Label
2 for 1



Orchestral & Concertos

Total Time - 153:21
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The Soul's Ransom*

  A Psalm of the Poor  
  (Sinfonia Sacra)  
  for soprano, bass, chorus and orchestra  
  Section 1  
1 Introduction. Lento - 4:17
2 'Who can number the sands of the sea'. Lento - 8:17
  Section 2  
3 'Hear ye this, O ye people'. Allegro agitato - 4:21
  Bass solo  
4 'We look for light, but behold darkness'. Moderato maestoso - 3:21
5 'Why are ye so fearful, O ye of little faith?' Lento 7:10
  Soprano solo and chorus  
  Section 3  
6 'The hand of the Lord was upon me'. Maestoso 9:29
  Bass solo and chorus  
  Section 4  
7 'The people that walked in darkness'. Moderato, energico - 5:00
  Soprano solo  
8 'See how, ye that love the light'. Moderato, tranquillo 5:06

The Lotos-Eaters†

  for soprano, chorus and orchestra  
9 I 'There is sweet music here that softer fall'. Andante tranquillo - 3:36
10 II 'Why are we weigh'd upon with heaviness'. Allegro - 1:39
11 III 'Lo! in the middle of the wood' - 2:40
  Soprano solo  
12 IV 'Hateful is the dark-blue sky'. Allegro moderato - 2:23
13 V 'How sweet it were, hearing the downward stream'. Andante tranquillo - 4:25
  Soprano solo  
14 VI 'Dear is the memory of our wedded lives'. Moderato - Lento - 4:28
  Men's chorus  
15 VII 'But, propt on beds of amaranth and moly'. Andantino - 2:20
  Soprano solo  
16 VIII 'The Lotos blooms below the barren peak'. Allegro tranquillo - Andante 11:07
  Chorus and soprano solo  

Blest pair of Sirens‡

  An Ode by Milton  

Invocation to Music§

  An Ode (in Honour of Henry Purcell) by Robert Bridges  
  for soprano, tenor, bass, chorus and orchestra  
  Introduction -  
18 I 'Myriad voicèd Queen!' Moderato - 5:10
19 II 'Turn, O return!. Allegretto tranquillo 4:05
  Chorus and soprano solo  
20 III 'Thee, fair Poetry oft hath sought'. Allegretto tranquillo 4:33
  Tenor solo  
21 IV 'The monstrous sea'. Maestoso energico 5:34
22 V 'Love to Love calleth'. Andante appassionato 5:17
  Soprano and tenor  
23 VI Dirge. 'Tome, tome, fair-hearted Goddess, come!' Maestoso - 8:05
  Bass solo  
24 VII 'Man, born of desire'. Moderato - 4:55
25 VIII 'Rejoice, ye dead, where'er your spirits dwell'. Più lento 6:10
  Soprano solo and chorus  
26 IX 'O enter with me the gates of delight'. Allegro vivace 5:41
  Soprano, tenor and bass  
27 X 'Thou, O Queen of sinless grace'. Allegro vivo 5:09

I was glad‡

  Anthem, with words from Psalm 122  
 Anne Dawson soprano§
 Della Jones mezzo-soprano*†
 Arthur Davies tenor§
 Brian Rayner Cook baritone§
 David Wilson-Johnson baritone*
  London Philharmonic Choir  
  London Symphony Chorus  
  London Symphony Orchestra  
 Matthias Bamert *†§
 Richard Hickox ‡
  14-16 February (Blest pair of Sirens, I was glad)  
  25-27 March 1991 (The Soul's Ransom, The Lotos-Eaters)  
  10-11 May 1991 (Invocation to Music)  
Chandos has been a major player in the long overdue rehabilitation of Parry’s music. Here his most important large scale choral works are available as a 2-CD set for the first time at the price of one full price disc.

The only available set of these large scale choral works combined with two of Parry’s most shorter popular works.

It features outstanding soloists supported by both the LPO under Bamert and the LSO under Hickox.

It comes complete with a booklet containing comprehensive notes and full texts

Parry’s two finest and most popular anthems, Blest Pair of Sirens and I was glad, make an attractive coupling to his famous choral works. The 45-minute work The Soul’s Ransom, with its sequence of solos and choruses, forms a broadly symphonic four-movement structure and The Lotos eaters; a setting for soprano, chorus and orchestra is performed by Della Jones, a characterful soloist. This is a full and atmospheric recording to match the incandescent performances.

On its original release these works received 3 stars in the Penguin Guide, and consequently make a welcome return to the Chandos catalogue.

"Here is an outstanding collection of some of Parry’s finest choral music, with two of his most popular anthems, admirably conducted by Richard Hickox  ... Della Jones is the characterful soloist in both works, to be joined by David Wilson-Johnson in the latter piece. The singing throughout is first class, warmly sympathetic, as is the orchestral playing, and Mathias Bamert is in his element in this repertoire, as is the Chandos recording team."

The Penguin Guide - 1000 Greatest Classical Recordings 2011-12

‘The choral singing and the playing of the LPO under Matthias Bamert is magnificent, ably championing these deserved revivals.’
Classic CD

Chandos has recoupled several of its choral recordings of music by Hubert Parry in a recommendable well-filled set which makes a very good introduction to the composer and his major contributions to this repertoire… This is a terrific set, the performances being uniformly excellent.
International Record Review

Parry’s scores at once anticipate and reflect Elgar, and it’s a mystery why such powerful, beautifully conceived and effective music is not heard regularly in our concert halls.
Classic FM Magazine

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