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Thomas Tomkins was an organist and composer of early English church music in the late Renaissance. A student of William Byrd and highly respected among his contemporaries, Tomkins was a master of the English Anthem (the English equivalent to the Latin motet).
The "Full Anthem" is usually a work in contrapuntal style for unaccompanied chorus, as in the case of "When David Heard that Absalom was Slain". The expression of grief is movingly depicted in the extraordinarily beautiful setting of this emotional text. The accents and commas found throughout the score and parts are intended merely to assist the instrumentalist in recreating the vocal phrasing and now of the corresponding text.
- 2 trumpet, horn, trombone, tuba
- Henry Martin
- Editions Bim