Assumpta est Maria Gradualia 1605

William Byrd
Vol 12  (Released: 10/09/09)
Hyperion CDA67675

Assumpta est Maria Gradualia 1605
(William Byrd)

All of the music on this disc is drawn from the first volume of Gradualia published in 1605, in which the Byrd’s overtly Catholic agenda is clearly displayed. These pieces show a glimpse of the man that is rather different from our more usual perception of the composer racked with misery at the deprivation of Catholics in England. Relaxed and confident, he indulges his considerable wit and imagination, and employs the most up-to-date musical styles. Here there is no wringing of hands, nor downcast eyes but rather the musical embodiment of an unshakeable faith.

The Cardinall’s Musick under Andrew Carwood show the deep feeling as well as the dignity of these illicit and originally secret settings THE INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY