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Ref: CDG1128

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24 tracks 62 min
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A rich collection of music from the medieval world

From the sounds of girls' voices to quiet instrumental moments, songs of love and devotion fill this album with the atmosphere of the medieval world and its exotic gardens. The music is taken from medieval manuscripts in museums and libraries around the world.

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A Garden of Music
A rich collection of music from the medieval world

From the sounds of girls' voices to quiet instrumental moments, this mix of songs of love and devotion fills this album with the atmosphere of the medieval world, and its exotic gardens. The music is taken from medieval manuscripts in museums and libraries from around the world.

The Summer Garden
1 Summer is icumen in
2 Mirie it is
3 Bryd one brere
4 Salterello (Serendipity)
The Oxford Girls' Choir

Love in a French Garden
5 Hyer matin
6 Quant voi la fleur
7 J'atendray tant
8 Foy porter
9 Lamento
10 Tout leis enmi
Serendipity

The Convent Garden
11 Alleluya psallat
12 Nobilis, humilis
13 Sancta Maria
14 Gloria laus
15 Lullay, lullay
16 Dou way Robin
17 Foweles in the frith
The Oxford Girls' Choir

The Monastery Garden
18 Petrone (Martin Souter)
19 Angelus ad virginem
20 Alle, psallite
21 Veni Sancte Spiritus
22 Summi Triumphans Regis
23 Veni creator
24 Collegerunt pontifices
The Oxford Girls' Choir
The Monks & Novices of Saint Frideswide



CCL CDG1128
Cover image: Book of Hours Southern Netherlands, c.1492 Add.25698 f.9, by permission of the British Library
This compilation P & C 2005 Classical Communications Ltd
Made in Great Britain

Inside book:

A Garden of Music
A rich collection of music from the medieval world

Sumer is icumen in,
Lhude sing, cuccu;
Groweth sed
and bloweth med,
And springth the wde nu;
Sing, cuccu!
Awe bleteth after lomb,
Lhouth after calue cu;
Bulluc sterteth,
Bucke uerteth,
Murie sing, cuccu!
Cuccu, cuccu,
Wel singes thu, cuccu;
Ne swic thu naver nu.

Sing, cuccu, nu; sing, cuccu;

London, British Library, MS Harley 978, f. 11v


Before the arrival of noisy traffic and the hum of modern suburban life the garden was the perfect refuge from the stresses and strains of the day. It may have lacked potatoes (not introduced until 1585), but the medieval garden was brimming over with rare herbs and spices, wild roses and all manner of fruits. It was a favourite haunt of young lovers, ideal for summer revels, but above all it was a peaceful place.

Medieval music is full of the sights and sounds of the natural world. Poets and musicians have always been influenced by their surroundings; even the humblest rose inspired the blossoming of some of the greatest music of the age. The inspiration for this album is a series of imaginary walks through atmospheric, timeless gardens. Sometimes the sounds of music making are close, sometimes more distant and mystical.

First, the coming of summer and the warmth of the sun are praised in the happy sounds of 'Sumer is icumen in', a song traditionally sung after the late Easter frosts have been banished. A cheerful Scottish song follows. Across the channel the pleasures and pains of love are contemplated amidst the dappled sunlight and vivid flowers of a French garden. Gentle music for a beautiful convent garden follows.. Finally, we are in the finely cultivated grounds of a vast abbey, with only the sounds of the choir and the warm tones of the organ to break the stillness of the night. 'Angelus ad virginum' can be heard just as Geoffrey Chaucer described it, performed with pure young voices delicately accompanied by the plucked psaltery.


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