GMCD 7152 – Christmas Music from St. Paul’s
The Haffner Wind Ensemble of London, Vasari Singers, Jeremy Backhouse – Conductor, William Fong – Piano, Alan Hacker – Basset Horn, Brigitte Dolenc – Piano
From Classic CD – Christmas 1998
Track 3 – In the Bleak Mid-Winter – opening (2:12) included on the Cover Disc.
Christmas music lovers will probably be familiar with two versions of In the Bleak Mid-Winter: those of Gustav Holst and Harold Darke, the latter of which is heard here. Normally, the first verse of Darke’s arrangement is sung by just a treble soloist as opposed to the full treble chorus used by conductor John Scott in this recording, taken from the newly released Christmas Music from St. Paul’s.
The Choir of St. Pauls Cathedral have been long considered one of the country’s finest and show no sign of letting that reputation slip. One feature that immediately marks out any St. Paul’s recording is the extraordinary acoustic of the Cathedral. This can be heard here: listen out for an echo that continues long after the choir has finished singing.