We popped over to Belgium to check out classical music's newest concert hall.
Repertoire: Requiem, et al.
Artists: The Chamber Choir of St Mary’s, Calne, Philip Dukes (vla), David Bednall (org)/Whiting
Label: Regent REGCD 327
Highly reminiscent of Howells’s and Durufle’s requiems, with its musical evocations of heavenly light, Bednall's Requiem sounds captivatingly individual and contemporary. The use of a solo viola, played with beseeching warmth by Dukes, is particularly effective. While one has every right to be dubious of a school choir, the girls’ performances go far beyond the expected standard for a non-specialist music school. It’s beautiful singing, with lovely tone and technique particularly in the upper registers. The soloists are strong.