Commissioned by the Genesis Foundation, Matthew Martin’s new Stabat Mater was premiered by The Sixteen and Harry Christophers at two separate concerts on 4 June 2014. The work forms part of the Genesis Foundation’s Stabat Mater 2014: Spirit, Strength and Sorrow project where The Sixteen and Harry Christophers performed the world premieres of three new Stabat Maters by Alissa Firsova, Tõnu Kõrvits and Matthew Martin at a free lunchtime concert at LSO St Luke’s and at a private event hosted by the Genesis Foundation at the Victoria and Albert Museum.
The three composers bring three very distinct voices to the traditional Stabat Mater text. Matthew Martin’s work as Organist of Brompton oratory has produced a detailed composition harking back to previous traditions of Stabat Maters.
The new commissions are part of a long-standing partnership with The Sixteen and Harry Christophers to commission and record new sacred choral music. In 2011, the Foundation commissioned Ruth Byrchmore, Tarik O’Regan and Roderick Williams to write music to poetry of the Spanish Mystics and in 2008, James Macmillan, Roxanna Panufnik and Will Todd wrote music to settings of Padre Pio’s Prayer. The three new Stabat Maters were recorded for release on The Sixteen’s own label CORO in 2015.
Matthew Martin studied at Magdalen College, Oxford and the Royal Academy of Music. He is one of the UK’s leading choral composers and is frequently commissioned to write for prominent ensembles, most recently BBC Singers, the choirs of Westminster Abbey, St Paul’s Cathedral, Chester Cathedral, St John’s College, Cambridge, and Magdalen College, Oxford. Upcoming projects include new works for the Sixteen, the Gabrieli Consort and the American Guild of Organsts. His work is now published exclusively by Faber Music.