Magazine article Gramophone

Cross-Cultural Choral Works from Panufnik Junior

Magazine article Gramophone

Cross-Cultural Choral Works from Panufnik Junior

Article excerpt

R Panufnik

Love Endureth (a). Love Abide (b). Magnificat & Nun (c) dimittis (c). Zen Love Song (d). Schola Missa de Angelis (e). Mass of the Angels (f) (e) Gilles Sinclair treb (b) Heather Shipp mez (ef) Ben Fleetwood Smyth ten (b) Mark Stone bar (f) Tom Little, (c) Richard Ogden org (d) Kiku Day jinashi-shakuhachi (bef) London Oratory School Schola; (b) Colla Voce Singers; (c) Exultate Singers/David Ogden; (ad) Voces8/Barnaby Smith; (be) London Mozart Players/(f) Lee Ward Warner Classics (F) 2564 65720-6 (65' * DDD * T/t)

Admirer as I am of Roxanna Panufnik's work, I am suspicious of creations intended to 'build bridges between different faiths'. This disc contains music for the Mass, Hebrew psalm settings and mixtures of Sufi and Christian texts but I am glad to say that Panufnik's musical integrity is not compromised. Though she is happy to refer to different traditions (Sephardic music, Turkish modes, for example), they are integrated into her own musical language. The pieces are sung by a variety of ensembles, all of them with quite distinct characteristics. The bright, chamber quality ofVoces8 in Love Endureth, the first track, is perfect for bringing out the work's piquant harmonies and dancing rhythms.

The first part of Love Abide, a setting of Rumi, is also very striking but I find it difficult to relate to the very different second section, a setting of I Corinthians 13:1-13 that strongly suggests recent John Adams. I much prefer the glowing sound world of the Magnificat (with interpolated Ave Maria)and Nunc dimittis, beautifully performed by the Exultate Singers with organist Richard Johnson. …

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