Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis
For SATB Choir (with divisions) and Organ
(2016) 7.5 minutes
Premiered at Peterborough Cathedral on 16 February 2017, as part of Even You Song by Peterborough Cathedral Choir conducted by Steven Grahl, with David Humphreys (organ).
My soul doth magnify the Lord,
and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.
For he hath regarded the lowliness of his handmaiden.
For behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.
And his mercy is on them that fear him throughout all generations.
He hath shewed strength with his arm.
He hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
He hath put down the mighty from their seat
and hath exalted the humble and meek.
He hath filled the hungry with good things.
And the rich he hath sent empty away.
He remembering his mercy hath holpen his servant Israel
as he promised to our forefathers Abraham, and his seed forever.
Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace according to thy word.
For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,
Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;
To be a light to lighten the Gentiles and to be the glory of thy people Israel.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end.
"The Magnificat was unaccompanied, and had unison lines developing into complex textures, a striking mix of magical harmonies and unisons, to create something lyrical, thoughtful and rather effective. The Nunc Dimittis started from a low drone with a slowly rising line over developing opaque harmony, and then at 'To be a light' the organ comes in with its drone and the choir line rises strikingly." Robert Hugill, Planet Hugill
"The short, unaccompanied setting of the Magnificat has identifiable Frances-Hoad fingerprints, piquant harmonies, chromatic twists and turns, a degree of rhythmic freedom. Given the circumstances it’s superbly delivered here. A beautifully read second lesson (based on Hebrews XI) precedes the Nunc Dimittis, which contrasts the lowest range of the men’s voices with the highest range of the children’s; it swells and fades most movingly."
Richard Hanlon, MusicWeb International
Performance history (post-premiere)
The Magnificat was recorded by the BBC Singers conducted by Katie Thomas in February 2018 along with eight of Cheryl's other choral works. These recordings were then broadcast over two afternoons during BBC Radio 3's Afternoon Concert programme on the 4th and 5th June 2018.
15th January 2017 - performed during Peterborough Cathedral Evensong by Peterborough Cathedral Choir conducted by Steven Grahl, with David Humphreys, organ (pre-premiere performance of just the Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis before Even You Song premiere in February 2017.
15th May 2018 - Gonville and Caius College conducted by Geoffrey Webber at Gonville and Caius Chapel, Cambridge UK. Part of the London Festival of Contemporary Church Music