Tavener: The Protecting Veil

Tavener: The Protecting Veil cover
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Tavener: The Protecting Veil
Matthew Barley (cello), Sukhvinder 'Pinky' Singh (tabla), Olwyn Fouéré, Julie Christie (speakers), Sinfonietta Rīga

[ Signum / CD ]

Release Date: Friday 14 June 2019

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Above the opening notes of The Protecting Veil, John Tavener wrote Transcendent With Awesome Majesty, communicating the scale of this universal, timeless, structurally perfect and emotionally powerful work.

In the composer's words, "the cello represents The Mother of God and never stops singing." Indeed, the cello sings without stopping for the entire 46 minutes of the piece, requiring huge mental and physical stamina. Matthew Barley leads Sinfonietta Rīga in this exploration of Tavener's musical works and inspirations, interspersing performances with readings of WB Yeats and Frithjof Schuon by renowned actors Julie Christieand Olwyn Fouéré. The influence Tavener drew from Indian music in The Protecting Veil is also explored further in Barley's performance with tabla player Sukhvinder 'Pinky' Singh in The Song of Separation and Waiting by Pandit Sultan Khan.

Matthew Barley is known internationally as a cellist, improviser, arranger, music animateur, and as Artistic Director of Between The Notes. His musical world is focused on projects that connect people in different ways, blurring the boundaries that never really existed between genres and people.

"I suspect those who come across the work for the first time via this latest release, will not find another performance out there which would give them quite the same feeling of intensity and spiritual uplift. Add to that Barley's own remarkably insightful booklet notes and a ravishing recording from Signum Classics, and you have something very special indeed." MusicWeb Recommended


1. He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven William Butler Yeats

The Protecting Veil
John Tavener

2. I. The Protecting Veil
3. II. The Nativity of the Mother of God
4. III. Annunciation
5. IV. The Incarnation
6. V. The Lament of the Mother of God at the Cross
7. VI. The Resurrection
8. VII. The Dormition
9. VIII. The Protecting Veil

10. The Mother of God William Butler Yeats
11. Mother and Child John Tavener
12. World Wheel XXVII: 'I heard the gypsy's violin play' Frithjof Schuon
13. The Song of Separation and Waiting Pandit Sultan Khan