BBC Singers - Britten, MacMillan, Paul Mealor
Concer in which Nicholas Cleobury conducts the BBC Singers. Paul Mealor: The Farthest Shore (world premiere). Britten: Rejoice in the Lamb. James MacMillan: Cantos Sagrados.
Live from St Davids Cathedral, Pembrokeshire
Presented by Nicola Heywood-Thomas
The BBC Singers, conducted by Nicholas Cleobury, with classic 20th-century choral scores and a new work by Paul Mealor.
Paul Mealor: The Farthest Shore (commissioned by the John Armitage Memorial; world premiere)
8.05pm: Interval music
Britten: Rejoice in the Lamb
James MacMillan: Cantos Sagrados
Claire Seaton (soprano)
Giles Underwood (bass)
Members of BBC National Orchestra of Wales Brass
St Davids Cathedral Children's Choir
Daniel Cook (organ)
Nicholas Cleobury (conductor)
At the 2013 St Davids Festival, the BBC Singers perform two 20th-century choral classics and the premiere of a brand new work. Britten's Festival Cantata sets lines by the 18th-century poet Christopher Smart - written largely while Smart was confined to a lunatic asylum. His idiosyncratic but touching words reflect on his condition, but also describe how he sees the glory of God in all created things: mythical, abstract and real - even his own cat makes an appearance. Britten's wonderfully imaginative music was composed for St Matthew's Church, Northampton in 1943.
James MacMillan's equally powerful Cantos Sagrados fuses Latin liturgical texts with poems by Ariel Dorfman and Ana Maria Mendoza in a powerful protest against political repression in Latin America.
Paul Mealor's music became known worldwide after his motet Ubi caritas was sung at last year's Royal Wedding. His new work turns to Celtic myth, and tells of the inhabitants of an Anglesey village, cast under a spell by a mysterious stranger. The work has been commissioned by the John Armitage Memorial - a charity promoting new works for chorus - and tonight receives its first performance.