Jubilee: A Celebration Of Royal Music
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Released: 20 Apr 2012
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The potential of music as a means of adding dignity and grandeur to state occasions has surely been lost on a few rulers in history. Portraits of antique kings and queens are more often admired (or the reverse) for their artistic qualities, as opposed to the enhancement in the status of their subjects they were originally intended to confer. Similarly, the appeal of ceremonial music from former ages is for modern listeners primarily aesthetic.
This 75-minute collection brings together music heard at a staggering variety of British royal occasions. Zadok the Priest has been included in every coronation service held in that building ever since the coronation of King George II and Queen Caroline in Westminster Abbey on 11 October 1727. There is music for the coronation of King James II in 1685 (Purcell’s I was glad), and a later setting of the same verses by Parry for the coronation of Edward VII in Westminster Abbey on 9 August 1902.
Of course, there’s music for Queen Elizabeth II – Walton’s Coronation Te Deum and Orb and Sceptre for the coronation on 2 June 1953 and Bliss’s march Welcome the Queen, which commemorated the return of the monarch from her Commonwealth tour in 1954.
The British national anthem hardly needs an introduction. Benjamin Britten’s distinctive arrangement was first performed in Leeds on 7 October 1961 and has been heard countless times since.
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