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Missa Orbis Factor New Works for the Liturgy
Choir of the Cathedral of St. John, Episcopal, Albuquerque, Iain Quinn, director; Maxine Thévenot, assoc.
Five Star review Choir & Organ - [OAR-907]

Reviews James Hildreth in the January 2010 The American Organist magazine:
"Under the superb dual leadership of lain Quinn and Maxine Thévenot, the choir of the Cathedral Church of St. John is held in high regard in this country and abroad. They produce a vibrant, decisive, clear, dynamically expressive sound. Each section is distinct, yet all blend into a unified whole. Quinn and Thévenot share playing and conducting duties, demonstrating their well-honed skills. The fine Reuter acquits itself handsomely as both accompanist and soloist. The choir has an ongoing commitment for performing new works, many of them commissioned, as are two on this recording: 'The Head That Once Was Crowned with Thorns' by David Arcus and 'New Every Morning Is the Love' by Stephen Paulus. The central feature is the Missa Orbis Factor by Gerald Near. The work's five movements are gracious, spiritually uplifting settings of the chant melodies. Interspersed with this are four movements of Peter Togni's Liturgical Suite for solo organ. Based on melodies of Orbis Factor, they are a perfect complement to the Near. David Hogan's compelling Magnificat [Mount St. Albans, 1989), Judith Bingham's poignant setting of Ave Verum Corpus, and Iain Quinn's brilliant Toccata on Victimae paschali laudes round out the program. All of this music will enhance and enrich the liturgy, especially as so beautifully presented here.

A rare ***** FIVE STAR Review in the March/April 2009 Choir & Organ from Shirley Ratcliffe:
". . . clear, expressive singing of the choir"

Reviews Victor Hill in the December 2008 issue of Journal of the Association of Anglican Musicians:
". . . excellent new repertory, including no fewer than eight first recordings. . . an expertly sung and played program of music that adds significantly to the literature. . . Gerald Near uses the Gregorian melodies as the basis for an attractive Mass setting, enjoyable for singers and accessible to a congregation."

Reviews the Nov/Dec 2008 American Record Guide:
"The album's centerpiece is a marriage of two different settings of the Missa Orbis Factor, an anonymous Gregorian Latin mass. . . . both composers were very true to their source materials. Near's organ-supported choral arrangements never stray far from the original melodies and rarely lose the limpid, flowing 'feel' of plainchant. Yet his imaginative, uncontrived harmonic elaborations and the organ's subtle underpinnings lend the work a distinctly modern aura. Likewise, Togni's organ interludes bear strong, if somewhat more complex allegiance to the original themes. The net effect is quite ethereal and soothing.

"Framing the mass at either end, we hear five other modern works. The program begins with a beguiling setting of the classic Magnificat text set by the late David Hogan (b. 1949), followed by 'New Every Morning is the Love'--a very moving piece recently commissioned from Stephen Paulus (b. 1949). Following the mass is Judith Bingham's classic Ave Verum Corpus text. The final choral offering is 'The Head that Once was Crowned with Thorns', a potent anthem by David Arcus (b. 1958). The program ends with Director of Cathedral Music Quinn's own remarkable organ Toccata on Victimae Paschali Laudes.

"The Cathedral Choir is first-rate in every respect--definitely one of the better American church ensembles I've heard lately. Raven's vivid sound does them full justice; the booklet is complete and very informative. Episcopalian choirmasters seeking to treat their congregations to accessible and stirring new music are urged to check this one out."

Major new liturgical music exquisitely performed on this CD includes two settings of the Gregorian chant, Missa Orbis Factor, one by Gerald Near for organ and choir, and one for organ solo by Peter Togni. Completing the program are five additional new liturgical works by David Arcus, Judith Bingham, David Hogan, Stephen Paulus, and Iain Quinn. Five of the works are *recorded for the first time on this CD.

GERALD NEAR: Missa Orbis Factor
Kyrie · Gloria · Sanctus · Benedictus · Agnus Dei

PETER TOGNI: Liturgical Suite on Missa Orbis Factor for organ *
Prelude · Offertory · Communion · Postlude

DAVID HOGAN: Magnificat Mt. St. Albans

STEPHEN PAULUS: New every morning is the love *

JUDITH BINGHAM: Ave verum corpus *

DAVID ARCUS: The head that once was crowned with thorns *

IAIN QUINN: Toccata on Victimae Paschali Laudes *

*First Recording

The Cathedral Choir of the Cathedral Church of St. John (Episcopal), Albuquerque, New Mexico, beautifully sings attractive and accessible works of high quality which were composed 1992-2008. For solo organ, the Liturgical Suite on Missa Orbis Factor was composed by Peter Togni in 1985. Its four movements are played by Maxine Thévenot on the Cathedral’s fine-sounding 2002 Reuter organ of 65 ranks and are interspersed among the sections of Gerald Near’s setting of the Mass Missa Orbis Factor as sung by the choir directed by Iain Quinn, with Maxine Thévenot accompanying on the organ.

Also for solo organ, Iain Quinn composed, and plays on this recording, his Toccata on Victimae Paschali Laudes.

Iain Quinn directs The Cathedral Choir in David Hogan’s beautiful setting of the Magnificat composed in 1985 for the Washington National Cathedral’s completion in 1990 and performed there at the Festival Evensong of Thanksgiving, September 28, 1990, and also directs Stephen Paulus’ “New every morning is the love” with Maxine Thévenot accompanying.

Maxine Thévenot directs, and Iain Quinn accompanies on the organ, the new works by Judith Bingham and David Arcus.

<font color = purple>Missa Orbis Factor</font><font color = red> New Works for the Liturgy</font><BR>Choir of the Cathedral of St. John, Episcopal, Albuquerque, Iain Quinn, director; Maxine Thévenot, assoc.<BR><I>Five Star</I> review Choir & Organ
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