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Sounds of Solstice

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Leading us from darkness towards the light, we open this year’s Canterbury Festival with a dramatic programme centring on the winter and summer solstices. The coldest winter is captured in Maxwell Davies’ O Magnum Mysterium and Poulenc’s chilling Un soir de neige, set alongside our new commission for Tenebrae’s male voices from acclaimed British composer Joanna Marsh.

Ešenvalds’ ethereal Stars (which we performed at last year’s BBC Proms) sets a new tone, before the choir is joined by harpist Camilla Pay in Holst’s mysterious Hymns from the Rig Veda, which hail the coming of spring. The programme culminates with John Rutter’s heartfelt thanks to God, Hymn to the Creator of Light.


Richard Rodney Bennett – The Seasons Of His Mercies
Bob Chilcott – Before The Ice
Joanna Marsh – In Winter’s House
Peter Maxwell Davies – O Magnum Mysterium
Francis Poulenc – Un soir de neige
Ēriks Ešenvalds – Stars
Gustav Holst – Choral Hymns from the Rig Veda
Edward Elgar – O Wild West Wind
Healey Willan – Rise Up My Love
James MacMillan – O Radiant Dawn
Jonathan Harvey – Song of June
John Rutter – Hymn to the Creator of Light


Nigel Short, Tenebrae


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