Sunday, April 24, 2011

All about Music

When I was growing up Easter Sunday was all joyous triumphal music, chocolate and lilies. Took me years of gardening to come back to and love the smell of lilies; and not understanding the symbolism of the lily I always wondered why the church wasn't full of tulips. While I loved singing the Easter service [it was really fun to belt out the old chestnuts] it never gave me quite what I wanted. What I wanted was for the choir to sing Tallis' amazing 40 part motet "Spem in Alium". You may know this work from the Janet Cardif/George Bures Miller piece 'The 40 Part Motet" which we were lucky enough to see at the National Gallery in Ottawa, where it played magnificently in the Rideau Chapel. It is a work for 8 choirs of 5 voices and is very demanding to perform, [perhaps that's why we never performed it despite my years of nagging]. I have never had the pleasure of hearing it live, but it remains the most sublime piece of choral music I have ever heard. I have a link here for the Kings College Choir version, [my all time favorite] and a link here to watch the King Singers, a group of 6 men preform it. They are wonderful to watch as they build the motet in front of your eyes. Voices change their parts until you have, thanks to the layering of the audio, the glorious 40 part motet. Have fun, eat lots of chocolate and Happy Easter.

Tulips for Easter


  1. Great writing, amazing photograph, inspiring music.
    Thank you for posting/talking/introducing these. The perfect sounds for my Easter morning!
    Happy Easter!

  2. Thanks so much Anna, so glad you enjoyed it. Found the King Singers on youtube doing this piece and had to order the DVD, thank heavens JB loves this music too as I play it a lot, and loudly.


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