“Karl Jenkins is a rarity among contemporary composers, balancing popularity with innovation.” --The Independent
Jenkins’s Gloria is in five movements and takes as its main text the Latin version of the hymn of praise to God from the traditional Christian Mass.
“Gloria in excelsis Deo (Latin for Glory to God in the highest) is the title and opening line of an ancient hymn that begins with the words that the angels sang when the birth of Christ was announced to shepherds in Luke 2:14. Other verses were subsequently added; the Latin translation from the original Greek is thought to date from the fourth century CE. In its present form the text forms a part of the Mass. In addition to its inclusion in innumerable mass settings the Gloria has been set, in isolation, by many composers such as Handel, Vivaldi and Poulenc.
““In my setting of the Gloria the traditional Latin text is set in the first, second and fifth movements, these being entitled The Proclamation, The Prayer and The Exaltation. Further to this I have extended the parameters by incorporating additional text in two further movements: movement III, The Psalm sets Psalm 150 in Hebrew, and movement IV, The Song, is my own adaptation in English of Deuteronomy 32:2, Psalm 144:9 and 1 Chronicles 13:8.
“In between movements, I have selected readings from various ancient religions, each expressing their own concept of the divine or a deity. The detachment of Buddhism, and the paradoxes of Taoism are both alternative ways of perceiving ultimate reality, and they therefore stand as a kind of counterpoint to the Abrahamic religions." --Karl Jenkins