Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell

Ludford: Ave Maria, ancilla Trinitatis; Missa Videte miraculum

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AllMusic Review by James Manheim

Nicholas Ludford, the preeminent composer of Catholic early 16th century England, has been largely ignored by performers until quite recently. Older than John Sheppard and younger than Robert Fayrfax, he has stylistic traits in common with both. Here you get a generous sampling of music associated with the Thursday Lady Mass in English Catholic worship, culminating in a big Missa Videte miraculum that, with its incipient use of imitation, you might take for Sheppard. The rest of the music consists of smaller chunks of polyphony in place of the vast edifices of Sheppard. Especially interesting is the Ninefold Kyrie, alternating short polyphonic settings of text with organ versets. These were recorded in a different location from the choral selections (and none of the music was recorded in Westminster Abbey itself); sample within the Ninefold Kyrie to see if you can identify the sonic shifts. They're subtle at worst. The Choir of Westminster Abbey under James O'Donnell is in its element here, and in the spacious realms of early English Renaissance polyphony they're preferable to the smaller groups that have recorded Ludford in the past. This is a strong release that will fill a gap on the shelves or hard drives of many English Renaissance enthusiasts.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Ninefold Kyrie
1 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:32 Amazon
2 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:27 Amazon
3 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:30 Amazon
4 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:30 Amazon
5 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:39 Amazon
6 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:30 Amazon
7 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:25 Amazon
8 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:34 Amazon
9 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:34 Amazon
Alleluia. Ora pro nobis
10 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:10 Amazon
11 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:01 Amazon
12 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:18 Amazon
Hac clara die turma
13 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:47 Amazon
14 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:40 Amazon
15 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:44 Amazon
16 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:37 Amazon
17 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:01 Amazon
18 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:26 Amazon
19 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:08 Amazon
20 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:46 Amazon
Ave Maria, ancilla Trinitatis
21 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 04:23 Amazon
22 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 05:48 Amazon
23 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:51 Amazon
Missa Videte miraculum
24 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 02:51 Amazon
25 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:22 Amazon
26 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 05:11 Amazon
27 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:40 Amazon
28 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 03:18 Amazon
29 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:41 Amazon
30 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:11 Amazon
31 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 03:55 Amazon
32 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 02:05 Amazon
33 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 02:00 Amazon
34 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 00:59 Amazon
35 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 03:19 Amazon
36 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:21 Amazon
37 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:53 Amazon
38 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 01:46 Amazon
39 Choir of Westminster Abbey / James O'Donnell 02:25 Amazon
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