The Trinity Te Deum is a re-imagining in Ešenvalds’ terms of the Anglican tradition of ceremonial music for a grand occasion. It was commissioned for the Installation of Sir Gregory Winter as Master of Trinity College, Cambridge, on 2 October 2012. This brief and brilliant hymn of praise opens with flashing fanfares from brass and organ, the choir’s declamation by turns jubilant and hushed before a ‘magical’ organ modulation leads to a contrasting centre. Anchored by an eternal drone, and flecked with harp decoration, this has the air of both a gentle, stately dance and a naive folksong. The tripartite structure of the hymn is respected with a return of the opening material but this is the briefest of reprises (the text is truncated too): three ecstatic shouts of ‘Holy’ and the rejoicing is done.
— from notes by Gabriel Jackson © 2015
Photo: Recording sessions for Northern Lights (Hyperion 2015), which took place in January 2014 at Trinity College Chapel and Ely Cathedral.