Summer Concert 2004
Saturday, 19th June at 7.45 p.m.
St. Mary's Church, Burnham-on-Crouch
Karl Jenkins: The Armed Man - A Mass for Peace
with soloists from the ROYAL OPERA HOUSE and a professional orchestra
Francis Poulenc (Text - Jean de Brunhoff)
The Tale of Babar the Little Elephant with special guest appearance as
narrator by Lord Birkett
"The Armed Man - A Mass For Peace" is the result of a special millennial commission from the Royal Armouries and the latest in a six century old tradition of "Armed Man" Masses that take the fifteenth century French song "L'Homme Armé" as their starting point.
Large scale in both scope and scale "The Armed Man" it is a profoundly moving yet very accessible work which uses the most traditional of means to explore an all too contemporary subject. As Karl Jenkins explains, "As I started composing "The Armed Man" the tragedy of Kosovo unfolded. I was reminded daily of the horror of such conflict and so I dedicate the work to the victims of Kosovo”.
"The Armed Man" has drawn on a diverse array of cultural and historical sources. It's difficult to think of another composer who could successfully place a muezzin's call to prayer within a Mass setting and follow it with a Kyrie that quotes both Palestrina and Brazilian drum rhythms. That Karl Jenkins does so with such ease and to such powerful effect is a tribute to his remarkable skill and musical sensitivity.
"The Armed Man - A Mass For Peace" received its world première in April 2000 at London's Royal Albert Hall.
The Burnham Music Group's performance was we believe the first performance in the area.