My Joy, my Life, My Crown

Saturday 22 March 2014

My Joy, my Life, My Crown

22 March, 2014 - 19:30 Exeter College Chapel


This term the Cherwell Singers present a concert of settings of the poetry of arguably the most skilful and important British devotional lyricist, George Herbert (1593-1633).

It seems fitting for a poet who has been described as having “a soul composed of harmonies” that musicians have responded warmly to Herbert’s poetry- some of it enduring as popular hymns, while some has inspired composers to create anthems and songs which attempt to match the beauty of the words in music of great lyrical quality. Thus we present not only some of the well loved and ofen performed “Mystical Songs” of Vaughan Williams, but also settings by Leighton, Britten and Harris, as well as by the contemporary composers Grayston Ives and Alec Roth. The organist will be Steven Grahl and the baritone soloist Mark Saberton.

Herbert’s first biographer wrote that he wrote “such hymns and anthems as he and the angels now sing in heaven”. We hope that in the beautiful surroundings of Exeter College Chapel the combination of the music matched to such skilfully crafted words will lift believers and non-believers alike to a greater appreciation and enjoyment of the enduring legacy of George Herbert.

Directed by: James Brown