Stile Antico promo photo 1
Marco Borggreve
All Manner of Thing includes Media Vita in 2010 picks
John Sheppard (c.1515-1558) is one of the Tudor composers who tends to get overlooked, but the brilliant young British choir Stile Antico have done him proud with this disc devoted to his music. He was a gentleman of the Chapel Royal during the turbelent reigns of Edward VI and Mary I, and the music on this recording reflects this. On the one hand, we have relatively simple pieces sung in English, and, on the other, gorgeously ornate pieces in Latin.

As usual with this choir, the programme has been carefully put togetherhe centerpiece of the disc - right there in the middle - is Media vita, an enormously long setting of Compline antiphons for Holy Week, on themes of death. It is Sheppard's masterpiece, and has only been recorded a few times before (notably by the Tallis Scholars). Stile Antico's version goes to the top of the short list. Throughout they sing with sensitivity, balance, and beauty. A superb disc.

All Manner of Thing
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