Music has naturally always been an intrinsic part of the Coronation rite. It is also an occasion for getting out the best of British (and Commonwealth). Thus, it has become a moment for a combination of great works through the centuries and the commissioning of new material.
For example, composers invited for 1953 included Walton (Te Deum and Orb and Sceptre march), Vaughan Williams (Old Hundredth), Bax (Coronation March) and the Canadian, Healey Willan (O Lord, our Governor); composers from the past included Tallis, Gibbons, Purcell, Handel, Parry and Elgar.
Two pieces stand out in that they have been included in every coronation since that for which they were written: Zadok the Priest (Handel) and I was glad (Parry). Zadok the Priest is one of four anthems that Handel composed for George II (1727) and caused such a stir that it has never fallen from favour. Likewise, Parry came up with the coup de theatre of including the acclamations from the Westminster Scholars in his 1902 composition, which are easy to re-write, and so it has become a set piece.
I think the Handel and the Parry will certainly be included in the future, along with best of historic and contemporary Britain and the Commonwealth.
An interesting aside is that the opening section of the Parry began in a very subdued fashion in its original. The Abbey congregation was caught off-guard that the Royal Procession had begun, so for 1911 he re-wrote the opening in its form familiar to us today. At the same time, Parry re-worked the orchestration of the double-choir section, with strident arpeggios that literally propel the Procession forwards.
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