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“Magnificent choral singing.”

LEO SOWERBY: AMERICAN MASTER OF SACRED SONG celebrates “the Dean of American Church Music” and his contributions to the choral and organ repertory. In the 1920’s, Sowerby’s music was regularly performed by orchestras (especially the Chicago Symphony) and it is heartening to see so much interest in his works in the 21st century. Gloriæ Dei Cantores has selected ten anthems to represent Sowerby as an inspired composer for worship as well as several sacred vocal solos and four of his finest works for organ.

**Included are the Premiere and Only Recordings of Leo Sowerby's Great is the Lord, Three Psalms, Turn Thou to Thy God, Whoso Dwelleth, An Angel Stood By an Altar, Lovely Infant, All They from Saba Shall Come, Jesu Bright and Morning Star, Canon, Chacony and Fugue, Songs of Faith and Penitence, Prelude on "Were You There?", Christians, to the Paschal Victim, Come, Holy Ghost, Bright, Blithe and Brisk, and O God the Protector of All

Critical Acclaim


  • “Gloriæ Dei Cantores has a warm, rich, blended sound with impeccable diction. This is exactly the right sound for the wide range of emotions in these anthems ... the choir demonstrates not only a wide palette of colors but also a sincere belief in the texts ... it is magnificent choral singing. ”
    American Record Guide

  • “... the choir sings well throughout the collection. They are well balanced and blended. They display a good dynamic range, which is well controlled and they sing with commitment.”
    “All these instrumental offerings are well played. David Chalmers, who has the lion's share, plays with sensitivity and skill and varies his registrations intelligently. James E. Jordan is similarly effective in his contribution.”
    “This is a worthy centenary tribute in which all concerned give of their best in Sowerby’s cause.”
  • “Concerning the performances on these discs, it is clear that the Gloriæ Dei Cantores choir has been expertly trained by director Elizabeth Patterson. All the anthems are well sung; the intensity of the singers’ commitment is evident in every piece. The organ works, too, are extremely well played by David Chalmers ...”
    Choral Journal

  • “The choral work under the direction of Elizabeth Patterson is consistent and well executed ... Organist David Chalmers handles the accompaniments to all the pieces very well, complementing the choral ensemble as well as showing off the wonderful subtle changes of color possible on the organ at Mechanics Hall ... Chalmers also does a fine job interpreting the organ works ... Also of high quality is the Festival Musick, directed by [Richard] Pugsley with James E. Jordan at the organ.”
    Cross Accent

  • “The music of Sowerby ... requires excellent blending of vocal sound, clarity of diction, and a clear understanding of the underlying emotions that Sowerby seeks to elicit. Gloriæ Dei Cantores provides just what this material needs ... This re-release opens with one of Sowerby’s best-known works, Great Is the Lord, and contains a very well-chosen combination of vocal and instrumental material that shows, throughout two-and-a-half hours, why Sowerby was deemed the ‘dean of American church music’ in the early-to-mid-20th-century.”
    TransCentury Communications

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