GERTRUDE JOHNSON (Soprano)
REBE HILLIER (Contralto)
WILLIAM HESELTINE (Tenor)
GEORGE PARKER (Bass)
THE STUDIO REPERTORY CHORUS and ORCHESTRA
Conducted by JOSEPH Lewis
'LAUDA SION' (Praise Jehovah)
A Cantata for Solo Voices, Chorus and Orchestra by Mendelssohn
THE Sequence Lauda Sion is sung to a plainsong melody at Mass on the Feast of Corpus
Christi. The words were written about 1264 by St. Thomas Aquinas. Mendelssohn composed his setting of the words (in a modern adaptation) for the Feast at Liege in 1846, the year before he died. His music is, of course, independent of the old plainsong, though a fragment of this is used in the Chorus which is given in the English version as ' They that in much tribulation wait and long for His salvation have with Him their dwelling-place.'
The opening words of each of the numbers are given below:-
Chorus, ' Praise Jehovah, bow before Him '
Soprano Solo and Chorus, ' Sing of judgment, sing of mercies '
Quartet and Chorus, ' Ye, who from His ways have turned '
Chorus, ' They that in much tribulation '
Soprano Solo, ' Lord, at all times I will bless Thee ' Chorus, ' Save the people who adore. Thee '
Quartet and Chorus, ' When they thirsted, rocks were riven '
Quartet and Chorus, ' Thou didst free them from oppression '
IN Exodus xv we are told that, after the children of Israel had crossed the Red Sea in safety, while Pharaoh's hosts were drowned, they sang the Lord's praises. ' And Miriam, the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand, and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances. And Miriam answered them, “ Sing ye to the Lord, for He hath triumphed gloriously ; the horse and his rider hath He thrown into the sea." '