Reviews

GMCD 7160 – Wedding Hymns

The Choir of Queens’ College Cambridge, The Cambridge University Brass Ensemble, James Week – Director, Matthew Steynor – Organ,

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Ipswich Evening Star April 2011

…Now, however, more CD companies are concentrating on a narrower range of material. Currently hymns seem to be a favourite target.
I suppose the roal wedding this week helps, and a collection featuring wedding hymns will be a boost to the industry. The Choir of Queens’ College, Cambridge conducted by Jonathan Weeks with the Cambridge University Brass Ensemble deliver 22 in a impressively recorded collection. With favourites like Lord of the dance, Amazing grace and Jerusalem, it provides plenty of ideas for wedding planning …

Organists‘ Review – February 2002

Some of the most familiar wedding hymns are presented in lively arrangements. The fresh-voiced choir is accompanied by combinations of organ and five-part brass ensemble. With such forces, the arrangements and settings are mostly free of the excesses to be encountered on TV’s Songs of Praise and some (Morning has broken, for example) are quite exquisite. Old favourites, such as Jerusalem and I vow to thee my country, sung at weddings more for the quality of the music than for the sentiment of the words, are included. (Ire recording was made before the controversy stirred up by the press during the silly season in the summer of 2001 when it was suggested that the words should be changed to I vow to thee my husband. This ran into difficulties in the second verse; But there’s another … )

This CD should be made available to broaden the horizons of those about to commit matrimony and give organists a break from some of the less desirable primary school assembly ditties with which we are increasingly saddled.
Alan Spedding