One of the world’s most popular and performed living composers, Sir Karl Jenkins is acclaimed for his diverse, innovative and inclusive scores – works rooted in the classical tradition but which draw on ethnic instruments and techniques to striking effect. From the award-winning Adiemus to the world premiere recording of The Healer, this special set traces Jenkins’s choral career to date, bringing together some of his most celebrated compositions – all of which are united by a harmony of peace guaranteed to appeal to music lovers of all stylistic and spiritual backgrounds.
Anyone coming fresh to Karl Jenkins’s music today is sure to be amazed by its stylistic range and all-encompassing variety. Music for choirs, orchestras and soloists, for commerce, film and theatre, performed in styles as varied as classical, ecclesiastical, ethnic and jazz-rock. Music that is often erudite but always accessible and welcoming. Such is merely to hint at the musical versatility of Karl Jenkins, or Sir Karl, as he became after his knighthood in June 2015.
As well as Karl Jenkins's most popular choral works, this box set includes a world premiere recording. The Healer: A Cantata for St Luke was written to mark the 10th anniversary of Grayshott Concerts, whose aim is to provide top-quality classical music performances for the people of Grayshott on the Hampshire/Surrey borders. It was first performed at St Luke’s Church, Grayshott, in October 2014. St Luke was also known as ‘The Physician’, so this whole work concerns healing, spiritual as well as secular, as in the healing of our planet. The libretto includes parts of St Luke’s Gospel and the Collect for the Feast of St Luke, as well as a poem by William Blake and new texts by Carol Barratt, Terry Waite and Vivien Harrison, co-founder, with her husband Peter, of Grayshott Concerts. The Healer is scored for a small ensemble, consisting of soprano, baritone, mixed chorus, oboe, strings and percussion, including two Middle Eastern instruments: the riq, a type of tambourine, and the darabuca, a goblet drum, played with the hands.
The 8 CDs that make up this collection are a glorious celebration of the human voice for which Karl writes so beautifully. Bryn Terfel has said that Karl always produces ‘impeccable writing for a multitude of voices and instruments’, a skill that in some surveys has made him the most-performed living composer in the world. He is also probably the most popular, for his musical and spiritual vision knows no boundaries and is welcomed by so many!