1605: Treason and Dischord

Label: Signum (SIGCD061) | Year: 2005

Singers: David Hurley (countertenor), Robin Tyson (countertenor), Paul Phoenix (tenor), Philip Lawson (baritone), Christopher Gabbitas (baritone), Stephen Connolly (bass)

Orchestra: Sarband ensemble

On 5 November 1605 Guy Fawkes was caught preparing to detonate 36 barrels of gunpowder under the House of Lords unveiling an act of attempted treason that shocked the whole of Europe. What led a group of young Catholic men to risk their lives for their faith?

400 years later the King’s Singers and Concordia illuminate the dangers of hearing Mass in secret, of conspiracy and downfall, and of Protestant relief and celebration, through a project of music and prose.

The music, structured around Byrd’s perfect 4-part Mass, contains motets by Catholic composers, balanced with Protestant anthems celebrating the downfall of the plot, and a commission from the British composer, Francis Pott. Master Tresham: His Ducke reflects on the of its day – 5/11/1605. The script, drawing on historic texts and written by Deborah Mackay for the quatercentenary concert series related to this CD, uses the dramatised persona of William Byrd, the most famous composer of his age, to recreate the atmosphere of change and hope in the Jacobean court.

Track Listing

  1. George Whitehead's Almand John Dowland 1:29
  2. Kyrie from Mass for 4 voices William Byrd 1:56
  3. A FancieWilliam Byrd 4:31
  4. Gloria from Mass for 4 voices William Byrd 5:55
  5. Ardens est cor meum Richard Dering 2:38
  6. Civitas sancti tui William Byrd 5:06
  7. Ave Maria gratia plena Peter Philips 2:11
  8. Credo from Mass for 4 voicesWilliam Byrd 7:58 
  9. Sir Henry Umpton's Funeral John Dowland 4:21
  10. O Lord how joyful is the King Thomas Weelkes 8:24
  11. From Virgin's womb/Rejoice, rejoice William Byrd 2:06
  12. M. Bucton's Galliard John Dowland 1:19
  13. Sanctus & Benedictus from Mass for 4 voices William Byrd 3:53
  14. Master Tresham: His Ducke Francis Pott 13:53

Agnus Dei from Mass for 4 voices William Byrd 3:31

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