A Good Understanding

A Good Understanding
“Writing choral music is one of my greatest pleasures in life,” says Nico Muhly, a recording of whose choral music featuring the acclaimed Los Angeles Master Chorale has just been released by DECCA (478 2506).

The disc presents an overview of Muhly’s music for choir, which ranges from settings of familiar liturgical texts such as the Magnificat and Nunc dimittis and Bright Mass with Canons, to more expansive works such as Senex puerum portabat for chorus and brass ensemble and A Good Understanding which also features children’s choir and percussion.

The music combines Muhly’s fascination with the Anglican choral tradition from Taverner and Tallis to Howells with his American roots. The latter is most apparent in the largest work on the disc, Expecting the Main Things from You, a three-movement setting of poetry by Walt Whitman for chorus, strings and percussion whose second movement - A Farm Picture (Interlude) - was inspired by watching satellites pass overhead in woodland in Vermont.

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