Michael Wise (c.1648–1687): Sacred Choral Music

Chastised for ‘excesses in his life and conversation’, Michael Wise lived a notoriously dissolute life which ended when he was hit about the head and ‘kill’d downright’ by the night-watchman of Salisbury Cathedral.

Thus was St Paul’s robbed of its forthcoming Master of the Choristers, and history of one of the period’s most prolific and accomplished composers. Geoffrey Webber and his choir pay testament to the more respectable music-making that is Wise’s legacy.

Also features organ music by Matthew Locke and Christopher Gibbons.

"Invigorating and highly persuasive"

"This disc demonstrates that Wise's music is unjustly neglected, and one can only hope that more ensembles and choirs will include some of his compositions in their repertoire."

"Wise was not the greatest composer of the Restoration period but he is too good to be forgotten and Geoffrey Webber and his team have done us a service in bringing him to the attention of CD buyers."


"The musical style is fairly simple with little in the way of compositional pyrotechnics, and the success of the enterprise rests on appropriate and convincing interpretation, together with an excellent choral ensemble. All these qualities are abundantly present; particularly impressive is the strength in depth of the singers."


"They make a cool, crisp noise in their reverberant chapel"

"As usual, Dr Webber’s singers give performances of the highest quality; sympathetic but never apologetic since they know that this repertoire, performed well, needs no apology."


Release date: 26 May 2008
Catalogue No: DCD34041
Total playing time: 1:10:15
Recorded on 30 June - 2 July 2007 at the Chapel of Pembroke College, Cambridge
Producer: Paul Baxter
Engineer: Beth Mackay
24-bit digital editing: Adam Binks
24-bit digital mastering: Paul Baxter
Design: Drew Padrutt
Photography: Paul Baxter & Dr Raymond Parks

Album Booklet

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