• Owen Rees leads early-music consort Contrapunctus alongside The Choir of The Queen’s College, Oxford in performances of John Taverner’s masterwork, the Missa Gloria tibi trinitas. A virtuosic work, it has pride of place in the Forrest-Heyther partbooks (in the Bodleian Library in Oxford), which it has been variously argued originated at Cardinal College or at the Chapel Royal. It might well have been heard on Trinity Sunday in the chapel of Cardinal Thomas Wolsey’s palace at Hampton Court. The work is accompanied by other sacred choral works by Taverner, including his Ave Maria composed for Wolsey’s Cardinal College, Oxford, and one of his most widely copied works, Gaude plurimum – a dramatic work where Taverner exploits the power of his full forces to evoke Christ’s harrowing of hell and the breaking of ‘the bloody powers of the prince of eternal death.’ Contrapunctus is an early-music vocal ensemble dedicated to passionate interpretations informed by authoritative insight and understanding. Directed by Owen Rees, a specialist in music of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, the group presents imaginative programmes revealing previously undiscovered musical treasures and throwing new light on familiar works. Performance ★★★★ Recording ★★★★★ Rees brings together both of his crack ensembles [and] the 40-strong collective recreates [Taverner's] lavish sound - BBC Music Magazine ★★★★★ Rees has a natural affinity for this music, whether underlining differences of mood, allowing phrases to bloom or deftly judging cadential arrivals, his touch is instinctive - Classical Source ★★★★★ [A] thrilling new recording - Planet Hugill 9/10 Between them the music of John Taverner comes alive and whether your interest is in Tudor polyphony of acappella choral singing this release will bring much pleasure - Cross Rhythms This glorious programme of polyphony by John Taverner offers much opportunity for contrast as delicate, sinuous passages of vocal chamber music open up into densely populated choral vistas - Choir & Organ The full ensemble brings an undeniable grandeur - Gramophone A must for early music devotees - The Northern Echo A very fine album - MusicWeb International Beautifully recorded by Signum, this is a novel and beautiful Tudor choral release - AllMusic
  • Four CDs for £20 Four early discs from the professional chamber-choir Tenebrae, who since their formation by former King's Singer Nigel Short have become one of the finest choral-groups in the UK. The combined experiences of the choirs members (who between them have worked with The Monteverdi Choir, the choirs of Westminster Abbey and Cathedral,  King’s College, Cambridge, I Fagiolini, The Tallis Scholars, The Swingle Singers, The King's Singers Gallicantus, Covent Garden, English National Opera) allows an extraordinary range of depth and precision to their performances and interpretations. These four discs are the first they released on Signum - covering music by Rachmaninov, Karl Jenkins, Howells and many others. The Dream of Herod features music for Advent, anthems for the Mother & Child, music for Christmas, and The Dream of Herod, a semi-dramatic contemporary work with a particular resonance at Christmas. Mother and Child is a distinctive and distinguished collection of works by a number of living composers, many of whom have established themselves at the creative forefront of the choral scene in recent times. Includes premiere recordings of works by Sir John Tavener, Francis Pott, Alexander L’Estrange and Jeremy Filsell. Gaudete was arranged by Classic FM's Hall of Fame 2004 'top-ten-composer' Karl Jenkins, sung by crack professional choir - Tenebrae - Gaudete is released on Signum Classics both with drums and percussion and as a pure, unadulterated, a cappella version. This EP release also features works by Steve Reich, Alexander L'Estrange and Sir John Tavener. Rachmaninoff Vespers is a live recording of the stirring performance by Tenebrae of Rachmaninoff’s ‘All-Night Vigil’ (Vsenoshchnoye bdeniye, Op. 37).
     
  • As part of Signum's 15th anniversary year we are delighted to release this celebratory collection of The Best of 'The King's Singers' – a 2-CD collection drawn from their now extensive catalogue on Signum.
     
    The first CD includes titles from Christmas (the groups debut album with Signum,  released in 2004), along with music from Landscape and Time, Treason and Dischord, Gesualdo’s Tenebrae Responsories, Sacred Bridges, Siglio d’Oro, Romance du soir, From the heart, High Flight and the 2012 release Royal Rhymes and Rounds.
     
    The second CD presents songs from four albums: Six, their most recent light album Swimming over London and the Grammy® Award winning Simple Gifts.
     

     

  • Will Todd is one of the UKs most popular and performed modern choral composers. His output includes works for choir, stage works, and orchestral works, and his music has been featured on BBC Radio 2, 3 and 4 and Classic FM, and performed all over the UK, Europe and the USA. On this disc, Nigel Short conducts superlative performances of his works by his BBC Music Magazine Award-winning choir Tenebrae and the English Chamber Orchestra. This compilation of his works includes the premiere recording of a new comission 'The Call of Wisdom', which on June 5th 2012 will be presented on the occasion of a Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral for the Diamond Jubilee of HM Queen Elizabeth II. [A] disc of miniature but perfectly formed musical marvelsGramophone
  • Following their highly successful releases on Signum (the Hymns Album and Handel’s Messiah conducted by Sir Charles Mackerras) the Huddersfield Choral Society is back in force with a magnificent collection of Christmas carols. This CD will be a perfect Christmas gift or glorious self-indulgence, absorbing the sacred and profane alike, beautifully performed and recorded for the festive season.
  • Following its successful premiere performance earlier this year, Francis Pott’s highly anticipated recording of The Cloud of Unknowing is likely to be musical milestone and a choral great. Drawing together a variety of texts and musical influences, Pott weaves together a deep and emotional work with an ethos reminiscent of Michael Tippett’s ‘War Oratorio’. Featuring:
    The Vasari Singers
    James Gilchrist, tenor
    Jeremy Filsell, organ
    Jeremy Backhouse, conductor

  • Tenebrae's latest disc on Signum sees their return to the repertoire of Russian composer Alexander Levine. The Divine Liturgy of St John Chrysostom is Levine’s most significant large-scale religious work to date. Inspired by the humility and humanity of the murdered Russian priest (and friend of Levine) Fr. Alexander Men and composed over a three-month period of

    spiritual immersion, research and contemplation (similar to that described by his great forebears Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov), the work traces a continuous spiritual growth towards the central point of the Liturgy – the Holy Communion.

     

  • The Dream of Herod features music for Advent, anthems for the Mother & Child, music for Christmas, and The Dream of Herod, a semi-dramatic contemporary work with a particular resonance at Christmas. Inspired repertoire selection - Classic fm An almost ecstatic tenderness - Gramophone More polished choral singing would be hard to find anywhere - BBC Music Magazine
  • The Choir of Jesus College Cambridge’s new release on Signum blends a selection of ancient and modern works from the 16th and 20th Centuries, all centred on the theme of evening. A gorgeous blended sound... the atmospheric singing of the choristers is of a high standardEarly Music Review The choir have a delicacy and a musical responsiveness that's particularly suited to this softer-edged programme of evening musicGramophone As an unguent to tired limbs, is this gorgeously dreamy recital to the soul: calorific with comfort, it pleases with delightful contrasts, sensitive, sustained singing and shapely interpretationsChoir & Organ Most enjoyableCross Rhythms
  • The Rodolfus Choir mark both Benjamin Britten’s centenary year and the 30th anniversary of the choir’s first concert with this new programme of works by both composers. The disc includes the premiere recording of Paul Mealor’s Praise, which was commissioned especially for the Rodolfus Choir.

    The choir’s previous disc of choral works by Elgar was widely-praised by critics:

    Recording of the Month: The Rodolfus Choir shine strongly in these well-loved Elgar part-songs choral worksMusicWeb International

    Elgarians and others tempted by the works assembled in this new collection can be assured that it is on a par with the best of themInternational Record Review

  • The first disc to be released in The King’s Singers 40th anniversary year celebrates music by Portuguese, Spanish and Mexican composers from the period known as the Siglo de Oro, The Golden Age. The idea for the disc came from the King’s Singers church concert programmes, where the acoustics allowed great scope for drama. The music featured is exceptionally beautiful and deeply moving, with a combination of joyful and sorrowful s e ttings, indicating the substantial outpouring of music during this period. Regularly performing over 100 concerts per season, the King’s Singers delight audiences a round the world. As the London Times states, they are ‘still unmatched for their musicality and sheer ability to entertain’.

  • The Choir of The Queen’s College, Oxford celebrate the works of choral music icon Herbert Howells in a disc that sets his works alongside pieces that they inspired and influenced – such as Nico Muhly’s Like as the Hart for choir, solo violin and percussion – as well as works that in turn influenced him. The disc features two world premiere recordings by David Bednall: settings of two Marian antiphons Alma redemptoris mater and Ave regina caelorum that ‘complete’ the partly-lost set of works that Howells wrote for Westminster Cathedral.

    Led by their director Owen Rees, the Choir of The Queen’s College, Oxford is among the finest and most active university choirs in the UK. Its wide-ranging repertory includes a rich array of music from Renaissance and Baroque masterpieces to contemporary works, including commissions.

    ★ A distinguished disc - Choir and Organ

    An excellent disc: the singing is incredibly tight, in the manner to which it has become increasingly accustomed under its musical director, Owen Rees, and Bednall’s writing is ingenious Gramophone

    This is a welcome disc of some lesser-known repertoire - Cathedral Music Magazine A well planned collection of British sacred musicMusic Web International
  • The Huddersfield Choral Society has an international reputation as the UK's leading choral society. producing a unique and full-bodied 'Huddersfield Sound'. This disc features some of our nation's most loved hymns and we hope that you'll agree that no better expression of the joy engendered by a goodly number of voices singing these hymns may be found than in the grand forces of the Huddersfield Choral Society. Our range attempts to cover an unaffected, pure lyricism through to a vast, full-throated sound that might shake the rafters of the sturdiest church. Our previous two hymn and carol albums were released in 1985; both received gold discs for achieving over 100,000 sales.
  • Hymns are part of the UK’s national culture, available to believers and non-believers alike. Some of the most popular hymn-tunes featured here – such as O Sacred Head, Sore Wounded or Good Christians All – are over four hundred years old, while others date from the latter half of the 20th century. Founded in 1836, the internationally renowned Huddersfield Choral Society is one of UK’s leading choral groups. Famed for their ‘Huddersfield Sound’, they have a long established histoy of recordings and performances, appearing at the BBC Proms in 2018 as well as broadcasing regualarly on radio and television. A must for choral devotees - The Northern Echo
  • 5 much loved King’s Singers albums - boxed set of 5 CDs

    Exclusively on Signum Records To celebrate The King’s Singers 40th anniversary year, the group are releasing five of their bestselling Signum released albums from the last 6 years in a fantastic new CD boxed-set collection. The King’s Singers Collection includes Tallis’s masterpiece, Spem in alium, alongside magical works of our day (Landscape & Time), the overwhelming beauty of William Byrd (Treason & Dischord) and Gesualdo and with some ‘icing on the cake’ - King’s Singers lollipops on Six. After 40 years The King's Singers show no sign of slowing down. The five albums in this set were made in the space of three years and display the diversity and flexibility of the world's premiere a cappella ensemble.
    Gesualdo: Powerful and harmonically daring music, the dark texts for Holy Week resonated with the Italian prince Carlo Gesualdo's own life, which was mired in murder, guilt and obsession. His music sounds as fresh as the day he composed it.
    Six: Classic jazz and pop arrangements plus a commission from Joby Talbot, displaying the group's famous blended sound, perfect intonation and customary style.
    1605: Follow the story of how a group of young religious zealots tried to change the faith of a nation by force. With music from Catholics and Protestants, this fascinating programme ends with a commission from Francis Pott which finds grim resonances with today's religious intolerances.
    Spem: Historians may not know exactly why Tallis wrote Spem in alium, but nobody disagrees that this majestic 40-part motet is one of the glories of renaissance art.
    Landscape & Time: We are all shaped by the surroundings and age in which we live. Listen to music, including five commissions, which give us different perspectives from England, Scotland, America, Japan, Hungary, Finland and Estonia.
  • Based at Windsor Castle, the members of The Queen’s Six make up half of the Lay Clerks of St George’s Chapel, whose homes lie within the Castle walls. This rare privilege demands the highest musical standards, as they sing regularly for the Royal family at both private and state occasions. In 2018 this included the weddings of Princess Eugenie and Mr Jack Brooksbank, and Prince Harry and Ms Meghan Markle, both held in St George’s Chapel. Most significantly however, it is the familiarity of living and singing together in Chapel every day that lends this group its distinctive closeness and blend, as well as an irresistible informality and charm. Individually, members of The Queen’s Six have appeared in many of the most prestigious vocal ensembles on the circuit, including The Tallis Scholars, Tenebrae, and The Sixteen. Their repertoire extends far beyond the reach of the choir stalls: from austere early chant, florid Renaissance polyphony, lewd madrigalsand haunting folk songs to upbeat Jazz and Pop arrangements.