Thursday, March 3, 2016

A Year's Music: Britten's "Rejoice in the Lamb"

Here is a piece that I've loved for a long time---yet another LP that I purchased at the old Chapel Square Mall in New Haven, CT in 1981 or 1982, during my div school days.

Benjamin Britten's cantata is based on Christopher Smart's poem Jubilate Agno, which in turn was written in praise of God while Smart was in an asylum. The cantata is for four soloists, choir, and organ and premiered in 1943.

Here is the text, selected from Smart's much longer poem:

There are several versions on YouTube; here is part 1 (with a link to part 2), with Choir of King's College, Cambridge, conducted by Sir David Willcocks.

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