Hampton Court Palace Chapel Royal to make first record in 20 years

Gramophone Wed 10th October 2018

Resonus Classics label signs historic choir

Gentlemen of Hampton Court Chapel Royal: joining the Resonus label (photo: Richard Champness)

The Choir of HM Chapel Royal at Hampton Court Palace is releasing its first commercial recording in more than two decades, having signed to the Resonus Classics label.

The relationship will begin in December, with a recording entitled 'Thomas Tallis: Gentleman of the Chapel Royal', performed by The Gentlemen of HM Chapel Royal – its six adult singers – under Director of Music Carl Jackson. The chapel choir also features 18 boy choristers, who will appear on future releases. 

‘The Choir is in fine voice to be recording,’ said Jackson, adding that they are excited to be ‘beginning this special journey with Resonus’. 

And what better way to begin than by performing music written by one of their own? Thomas Tallis, himself a Gentleman of the Chapel Royal, dominated the musical life of Renaissance England. In 1575, Queen Elizabeth I granted him a patent to print and publish music, which was one of the first such arrangements in the country, and for the remaining 10 years of his life, Tallis had exclusive rights to print any music in any language. The music on the Resonus album was written for the Chapel Royal Choir, and would have been first performed within Hampton Court itself. 

The choir joins a growing artist roster and catalogue on the Resonus label, which includes the 2015 Gramophone Baroque Instrumental Award for David Watkin’s recording of Bach’s Cello Suites. The next recording from the partnership will be of the music of Thomas Tomkins, another Gentleman of the Chapel Royal, scheduled for release at the end of 2019.

Edward Christian-Hare

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