A Thanksgiving Anthem - Rejoyce in the Lord
Editor: Cedric Lee
for solo voices, SATB chorus, oboe and strings
Comes with: £13.00 Score + set of parts, £6.00 Chorus score
Peter Holman wrote about the present work in his introduction to the CD ‘William Croft at St Paul’s’ produced under the Helios label of Hyperion records, No. CDH 55252, with the Parley of Instruments and the Choir of St Paul’s Cathedral, and John Scott, conductor.
“The anthem Rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous was published in [1724 in Croft’s handsome two volume anthology of church music,] Musica Sacra, but had been written four years earlier for a service in the Chapel Royal on 13 November 1720. It is a fine and remarkably sophisticated work in five distinct movements, opening with a grave prelude for oboe and strings, its cadences decorated with an expressive arching phrase with a false relation at the top; it becomes the germ of an important motif in the contrapuntal first chorus, and can be heard again in the fifth movement, the duet ‘For the word of the Lord is true’.
The second movement, ‘Praise the Lord with Harp’, is a fine ground-bass movement, scored for alto, oboe, two violins and continuo. Its busy, machine-like patterns recall Purcell’s air ‘Wondrous Machine’ from the 1692 St Cecilia Ode, Hail bright Cecilia, with the evocation of the organ turned into an evocation of the harp, lute, and an unnamed ‘instrument of ten strings’.