David Briggs

Concert Organist and Composer

Choir - Organ

A Harvest Anthem (2006)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Paul Hale and the RSCM Nottinghamshire Area Committee.
(6 mins)
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A grand setting – particularly suitable for Massed Choral Festivals. There is an 'espressivo' middle section, suitable for either treble soloist or semi-chorus.

"When God made man, he gave him all the earth, all growing things, with every bird and beast, then Adam named them at the Lord’s command…" (Stanbrook Abbey Hymnal)

     Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

A Song for Terri (2006)

SSA and Organ

Written in memory of a good friend, this setting is quasi-Mahlerian in its intensity…
(5 mins)
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"Life is short, and there is little time to gladden the hearts of those who journey with us. So be swift to love, make haste to be kind, and may the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, be with you, and those that you love, this day and for evermore. Amen". (Frédéric Amiel)

     Printed copy: £3.00   PDF copy: £2.25  Contact us to order

 

Adam lay y bounden (2005)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Dr Robert Delcamp for the 2005 Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols at All Saints Chapel, University of the South, Sewanee.

(4 mins)
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Unlike Boris Ord’s famous setting, this was not composed in the bath! It is a very incisive and rhythmic carol with a percussive Organ accompaniment. Especially suitable for people who are young at heart…

     Printed copy: £3.00 Contact us to order

 

Ardingly Mass (2010)

commissioned by Ardingly College, West Sussex (Robert Costin, Director of Music)
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Congregation, S.A.T.B. and Organ (with optional Brass for Gloria)

    View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.75

 

Ave Maria (2004)

TTBB and Organ
(6 mins)
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Commissioned in 2004 by the Lay Clerks of Blackburn Cathedral and first performed by them at their Advent Carol Service in 2005. Subsequently broadcast on BBC 3's 'Choral Evensong'. It is a rich and lyrical setting for divided Tenors and Basses with organ accompaniment.

    View free sample  Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

Ave Maria (2005)

SSA and Organ
Commissioned by the Choir of Downe House School, Berkshire
(6 mins)
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Quite straightforward – even though it’s in G flat major… Duruflé-inspired harmonies

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Ave Maris Stella (2010)

commissioned by the Choir of St John's Episcopal Cathedral, New Mexico (Iain Quinn, Director)
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S.A.T.B. unaccompanied

    View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.00

 

Ave Verum Corpus (2004)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Matthew Owens and the choir of St Mary's Cathedral, Edinburgh, under the 'Capital Commissions' scheme, and premiered by them in the Edinburgh Festival, August 2004.
(6 mins)
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Initially inspired by the famous Mozart masterpiece, here is a moving setting of the same Latin text, this time wrapped up in the language of the early 21st Century. Cool and gently emotive organ interludes (with double pedal) frame the choral sentences, which too are cosseted in ecstatic post-Debussyan harmonies. Needs quite experienced singers…

     Printed copy: £4.00 Contact us to order

 

Away in a Manger (2006)

SATB and Organ
Dedicated to my wonderful daughters and nieces!
(5 mins)
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First performed by Michael Perrier and the Choirs of St Mary’s Parish Church, Moseley, Birmingham, at their 2006 Festival of 9 Lessons and Carols, this setting uses the traditional Kirkpatrick tune, with enriched harmonies. Ideal for choirs of good Parish Church standard.

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Caedmon's Hymn (2004)

Anthem for Carlisle Cathedral Festival (Double Choir, unaccompanied)

Rich and Expansive

(6 mins)

Printed copy: £4.00 Contact us to order

 

Carol: The Noble Stem of Jesse (1996)

SSAATTBB a capella
for the Gloucester Cathedral Choir

(5 mins)

Printed copy: £3.00 Contact us to order

 

Christ's Peace (2003)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by the Rosengren family in celebration of 35 years of marriage

Mellow, and ideal for choirs of good Parish Church standard

(6 mins)

Printed copy: £4.00 Contact us to order

 

God be in my head (2005)

Commissioned by Mr and Mrs E P James for the Choir of Packwood Parish Church, Warwickshire
Mellow, and ideal for choirs of good Parish Church standard
(2 mins)

View free sample  Printed copy: £2.00   PDF copy: £1.50  Contact us to order

 

Hallelujah - Psalm 150 (2005)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Mr and Mrs E P James for the Choir of Packwood Parish Church, Warwickshire
(6 mins)
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Joyful, and ideal for choirs of good Parish Church standard

    View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.00

 

Holy is the true light (1997)

ATB and Organ. Commissioned by RSCM America

Mellifluous and meditative
(5 mins)

Printed copy: £3.50 Contact us to order

 

Hosanna to the Son of David (2003)

SATB and Organ

A Palm Sunday anthem, commissioned by Glenn Miller and the Choir of Kirk-in-the-Hills, Bloomfield Hills, MI, USA, and first performed by them on Palm Sunday 2003
(6 mins)

Printed copy: £4.00 Contact us to order

 

How lovely are thy dwellings fair (Psalm 84) (2010)

commissioned by the Choir of St Thomas Episcopal Parish, Coral Gables, Florida (Kenneth Willy, Director)

View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.00

 

I will lift up mine eyes unto the Hills (2006)

SATB a capella Commissioned by the Exon Singers First performed live on BBC Radio 3 Choral Evensong September 2006 from Buckfast Abbey, Devon.


(4 mins)
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Evocative and widely-spaced chords – with plentiful added notes and ending in a lush F sharp major. Not without intonation challenges…!

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Jesu, the very thought of thee (2006)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Dr Robert Delcamp for the Sewanee Church Music Conference,
July 2006.

Expressive and moderately challenging - very much in the Cochereau style. Would suit an experienced Choir with a good organist…
(6 mins)

Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

Jubilate Deo (1998)

Commissioned by the Twin Rivers Choral Society, Easton, Pennsylvania
SATB Sop solo and Org

Virtuoso, Hakim-esque organ part - very straightforward Vocal Parts…
(7 mins)

Printed copy: £5.00 Contact us to order

 

Laus Trinitati (2008)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Christchurch Cathedral, Dublin
An expansion of a motet for Trinity Sunday by Hildegard of Bingen - plainchant wrapped up in a C21st guise…

(8 mins)

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Let all mortal flesh keep silence (2010)

commissioned by the Choir of the Cathedral of the Redeemer, Calgary, Alberta (The Reverend Leighton Lee, Dean)
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S.A.T.B. unaccompanied

    View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.00

 

Let all the World in every corner sing (2008)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Mr and Mrs Ewart James

Quite straightforward but exciting…
(6 mins)

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Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis 'The Hereford Service' (2000)

SATB Ten solo/Organ. Commissioned by the Hereford Three Choirs Festival 2000 with a grant from the Clarke-Whitfield Trust - first performed by the Combined Choirs of Gloucester, Worcester and Hereford Cathedrals, with Peter Dyke (Organ).
(10 mins)
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A powerful and extended setting – suitable for a Festival Evensong. Moderately complex…and exciting.

     Printed copy: £4.00 Contact us to order

 

Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis 'The Truro Service' (2004)

SATB and Organ. Commissioned in thanksgiving for the life of John Taylour. First performed in Truro in November 2004 and subsequently recorded on the Regent Label. Broadcast on BBC Radio Three.
(9 mins)
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Lush and post-romantic, this setting could have been the product of an imaginary meeting of Alexandre Scriabin, Herbert Howells, Marcel Dupré and Pierre Cochereau… in an upscale Parisian restaurant…!

    

Recorded by the choir of Truro Cathedral
www.allmusic.com/album/pader-an-arleth-music-for-truro-cathedral-mw0001574492
You can download low resolution excerpts here:
Magnificat - Nunc Dimittis


Printed copy: £4.00 Contact us to order

 

Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis for Jesus College, Cambridge (2008)

Treble Voices and Organ
(8 mins)

View free sample  Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis for Trinity College, Cambridge (2008)

SATB and Organ Broadcast by Trinity College Choir on BBC Radio 3 Choral Evensong (1st July 2009)


(8 mins)
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Excerpts here

Hyperion programme note: Perhaps because the evening canticles are so intrinsic to that Anglican choral tradition, Briggs’ Trinity Magnificat and Nunc dimittis—even with organ accompaniment—feel closer to Dover than to Calais. With a fine sense of architecture and alternations of choral texture, this pairing is the most recent work here—composed for the forces on this recording in 2008.

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Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis, St Patrick's Service (2013)

SATB and organ for Stuart Nicholson, David Leigh and the Choir of St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin

Commissioned in memory of Arthur West (1929-2012)



View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.00

 

Matin Responsory (1999)

for the Gloucester Cathedral Choir
SSAATTBB a capella
(2 mins)
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'With a passing nod to Giovanni Palestrina'! Makes an interesting change from the
ubiquitous Palestrina setting of the same text.

    View free sample  Printed copy: £3.00 Contact us to order

 

Messe pour Notre-Dame (2002)

for SATB and 2 Organs (although works well with one...)
Commissioned by Neil Shephard and the Choir of Keynsham Parish Church, Bristol.
First performed by them at Notre-Dame de Paris on 28 July 2002, subsequently in USA and Ireland.
(26 mins)
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Composed 2002 and premiered in Notre-Dame de Paris. Duration 27 minutes. S.A.T.B. and 2 organs (but works well with one). Level of difficulty: similar to Vierne, Widor and Langlais Masses.

Listen to excerpts here – Choir of Trinity College, Cambridge (directed by Stephen Layton, David Briggs, organ): http://www.hyperion-records.co.uk/dc.asp?dc=D_CDA67808&vw=dc

Listen to the Kyrie, Gloria and Sanctus performed by the Academie Vocale de Paris, directed by Iain Simcock, David Briggs (Orgue de St Merri, Paris)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wmPJcO3tU50

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJfIgVU42t4&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0v3zd_Pago

Reviews:

Gramophone Magazine (Critics’ Choice, Christmas 2010): “It’s wonderful to hear new settings of familiar liturgical texts which are so emotionally powerful, thanks to David Briggs’s luminous choral writing and beautiful harmonic language in this Mass for Notre-Dame”. (Christopher Nickol)

Gramophone Magazine (Critics’ Choice, Christmas 2010): “In Briggs’ Mass, here is music to set beside cherished choral masterworks by Fauré, Duruflé and Briggs’ own teacher Jean Langlais” (Richard Osborne)

International Record Review: “There's only one word for this. Spectacular…. Stephen Layton has inspired his singers to heights of magnificence, relishing Briggs's penchant for rich, sumptuous harmonies and ravishing melodic lines, but at the same time moving beyond mere effect and rooting out the genuine musical intensity behind these finely crafted works…. The musical voice we hear in the improvisations is certainly present in the choral music, yet it's so finely crafted and idiomatically written that we realize that, as a composer, Briggs is no mere writer-out of inspirational ideas but a man with a well-honed gift for creating true music.”

BBC Radio 3 CD Review: "An overwhelming, all-compassing audio experience - I can't resist it"

Gramophone Magazine (Editor's Choice, August 2010): "I can confidentially say that this recording is one of the greatest CDs of sacred choral & organ music you'll ever hear. I'm not ashamed to say I had tears in my eyes; listeners who are churchgoers & non-believers alike will find this disc a profoundly moving experience."

Classical Music Sentinel: “All of you who have become convinced that any new music being written these days is only going to be either boring formulaic minimalism, atonal noise, electronic manipulation, or worst of all, tepid crossover attempts to draw a different crowd, can all breathe a deep sigh of relief. David Briggs (b1962) has come to the rescue with this jaw-dropping Mass for Notre-Dame, composed in 2002. The choral writing is just stunning in its rich harmonic colors, adventurous intervals, long flowing lines and cathedral filling 'grandeur'.”

    View free sample  Printed copy: £7.00   PDF copy: £5.25  Contact us to order

 

Messe pour Saint-Sulpice (2010)

Co-commissioned by the Choir of All Saints, Northampton, UK (Lee Dunleavy, Director) and the Choir of the Cathedral of the Redeemer, Calgary, Alberta (The Reverend Leighton Lee, Dean)


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Co-commissioned by the choirs of All Saints, Northampton and The Cathedral of the Redeemer, Calgary, this work was premiered in St Sulpice on 28th May, 2011.  Scored for S.A.T.B. and girls’ choir (or soprano solo) and two organs – but works fine with one.  Recorded (on the Naxos label) with the Vasari Singers (directed by Jeremy Backhouse) mid-February 2013. See reviews here

    View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £5.25

 

Music (2004)

SATB unaccompanied
A setting of the poem by Walter de la Mare.
Commissioned by the Britten Singers, Hereford
(5 mins)

Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

O Lord support us (2006)

SATB and Organ Commissioned by Jeremy Bruns, in honour of his wife, Cathy. First performed by the Choir of St Thomas, 5th Avenue, directed by John Scott


(6 mins)
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Excerpt here

Hyperion programme note: St Thomas Church, Fifth Avenue, sustains a fine choir of boys and men, and it was for these forces and their conductor John Scott that Briggs wrote O Lord, support us in 2005. Commissioned by the then Assistant Organist Jeremy Bruns for his wife Kathy, this setting of an exquisite evening collect from the Book of Common Prayer is a tender wash of unashamed loveliness.

     Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

O thou who art unchangeable (1999)

Commissioned by Virginia Wesleyian University, USA
SATB 2 x Sop solo/Organ
(7 mins)
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A setting of a text by Soren Kierkegaard, the expansive outer sections of this anthem contrast with a highly expressive middle section for two high soprano soloists.

     Printed copy: £4.00 Contact us to order

 

Oculi Omnium (2010)

...in celebration of Richard Tanner's 40th birthday
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S.A.T.B. unaccompanied

    View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £1.50

 

Psalm 149 - Sing unto the Lord a new song (2006)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Mr and Mrs E P James for the Choir of Packwood Parish Church, Warwickshire

Very joyful, and ideal for choirs of good Parish Church standard

(6 mins)

Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

Psalm 98 - Sing unto the Lord a new song (2008)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Peter Irving, Organist of Solihull School, in celebration of the newly restored organ by Nicholson.

Challenging organ part, euphoric choral parts.

(7 mins)

View free sample  Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

Regina Coeli (2005)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Michael Perrier and the Choirs of St Mary's Parish Church, Moseley, Birmingham for their 600th Anniversary celebrations
(6 mins)
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Celebratory, loud and ideal for choirs of good Parish Church standard. A little bit like Parry, but with heaps of added garlic and a decidedly Parisian accent…

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Remembered Joy

SATB and Organ

in loving memory of Kerry Zack

First performed at the Church of the Good Shepherd, Lexington, Kentucky, USA

View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.00

 

Rochester Service (2010)

commissioned by the Friends of Rochester Cathedral for the Cathedral Choir (Scott Farrell, Director)
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S.A.T.B. and organ

    View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.00

 

Set me as a seal (2011)

for John and Karen's wedding in Gloucester Cathedral, 8th October 2011
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S.A.T.B. unaccompanied

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St Davids Cathedral - Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis

SATB and Organ Broadcast from St Davids on BBC Radio 3 Choral Evensong (27th May 2009)


(8 mins)
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Review in The American Organist: “The concluding work is the stunning St Davids Service … this setting is distinguished for its rich, intriguing harmonies, textual sensitivity, drama, and exalted conclusion. The St Davids Choir well represents its nation’s strong heritage of song”.

    

Recorded by the choir of St David's Cathedral on Regent REGCD318
www.prestoclassical.co.uk/w/147985
You can download low resolution excerpts here:
Magnificat - Nunc Dimittis


View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.00

 

St Davids Cathedral - Te Deum & Jubilate

S.A.T.B. and organ. Commissioned by the Choir of St Davids Cathedral, Wales (Alexander Mason, director)


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Review in The American Organist: “The concluding work is the stunning St Davids Service … this setting is distinguished for its rich, intriguing harmonies, textual sensitivity, drama, and exalted conclusion. The St Davids Choir well represents its nation’s strong heritage of song”.

    View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.00

 

The Lord bless you and keep you (2005)

SATB and Organ
Commissioned by Mr and Mrs E P James for the Choir of Packwood Parish Church, Warwickshire

Relaxing and ideal for choirs of good Parish Church standard. A little bit like John Rutter, but with added garlic…
(5 mins)

Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

The Music Mountain (1991)

SATB, S.T. soloists, 2 organs (but can be performed with one)
Commissioned by the Three Spires Singers: words by Cornish Poet Bob Devereux
SSAATTBB ST soloists
(15 mins)

Printed copy: £6.00 Contact us to order

 

The Star-spangled Banner (2000)

SATB a capella
(3 mins)
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Composed as an encore for the Gloucester Cathedral Choir USA tour (Easter 2000),
this arrangement begins with some spoof Palestrina-esque imitative counterpoint.
Almost imperceptively the American National anthem is introduced (by the altos!).
Gradually this becomes more and more noticeable (… and the American audience rise
to their feet, one by one!). The final phrase is a grand, homophonic statement of
"… and the land of the brave".

     Printed copy: £3.00 Contact us to order

 

Truro Eucharist (1990)

SATB and Organ
Kyrie eleison, Gloria, Sanctus, Benedictus, Agnus Dei
(recorded by the Truro Cathedral Choir on PRCD 614 and also on the Regent Label)
(9 mins)
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Now regularly performed in over 15 English cathedrals, this opulent setting features a French-inspired harmonic language – and has the advantage of fitting well into a liturgical context (ie. it’s not too long!). The last movement is a lush, accompanied 8-part setting – maybe rather like Richard Strauss on vacation in Paris! A great showpiece for any choir – and organist…

    

Recorded by the choir of Truro Cathedral
www.allmusic.com/album/pader-an-arleth-music-for-truro-cathedral-mw0001574492
You can download low resolution excerpts here:
Kyrie - Gloria - Sanctus - Benedictus - Agnus Dei


View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £3.75

 

Ubi Caritas est amor (2004)

SATB and Organ

A wedding present for my beautiful wife, Madge, on 28 June 2004.
A succulent setting, inspired by the music of Gabriel Fauré.
(4 mins)

Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

Ubi Caritas est amor (2006)

SSAATTBB a capella Commissioned by Gary Desmond and the Choir of Bristol City Church, UK - for their visit to Notre-Dame de Paris, July 2006. Not unduly difficult - and based on the original Gregorian Chant


(5 mins)
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Excerpts here

Hyperion programme note: Immediate comparisons with Cochereau’s teacher Duruflé are tempting in the setting of Ubi caritas et amor. Briggs takes the plainchant in different directions harmonically, however, and avoids a mere refurbishment of the Duruflé setting. This a cappella motet, like the Mass, was composed for a Bristol church — Bristol City Church — and first heard too in Notre-Dame de Paris, at Grand-Messe on 30 July 2006.

    View free sample  Printed copy: £4.00   PDF copy: £3.00  Contact us to order

 

Versicles and Responses (2011)

for Adrian Partington and the Choir of Gloucester Cathedral

View free sample 

 

Vesper Responsory (2010)

commissioned by the Choir of St Thomas, Fifth Avenue, New York City (John Scott, Director)
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S.A.T.B. and organ

    View free sample  Download full pdf copy for £1.50

 

When in our Music God is glorified (2003)

A six minute anthem for trebles and Organ (with optional Trumpet), commissioned by Paul Walton and the Bristol Cathedral Girls Choir for their 10th anniversary, and first sung by them at a Festival Concert featuring the girls choirs of Bath Abbey and Bris
(6 mins)

Printed copy: £4.00 Contact us to order

 

When waters kiss one bank (1996)

SSAATTBB a capella
Words by John Donne; for the Gloucester Cathedral Choir

Broadcast on BBC 3 Choral Evensong
(3 mins)

Printed copy: £3.00 Contact us to order