The Tallis Scholars are waking up early this morning to begin chanting all the hours of the traditional Divine Office (including Prime!), starting with Matins at 1 a.m. London Winter Time (falling back a week before we do in the USA):
You may see all the Offices and their London times here. Peter Phillips of the Tallis Scholars describes his planning for the day's performances: evidently, these Hours are not celebrating either today's feast of Christ the King according to the 1962 Roman Calendar (which would be entirely appropriate since the Tallis Scholars have included Prime, eliminated during the post-Vatican II revision of the Divine Office) or the Thirty-First (31st) Sunday of Ordinary Time according the 1970 Roman Calendar and revised Liturgy of Hours!
In the course of describing his choices he mentions that he wanted to feature the music of Saint Hildegard of Bingen during the minor hours, sung by the women of The Tallis Scholars:
Some decisions were made before the actual music was chosen. I decided the Offices of daylight (slightly depending on where you are and the time of year) – Prime, Terce, Sext and None – should be sung by women, and should include music by Abbess Hildegard of Bingen. Eventually I had to leave Terce out of this neat arrangement, but the other three and Matins are introduced by her music, the one at Matins which launches our cycle, entitled In principio, is one of the great compositions of the pre-polyphonic period. In our broadcasts the women then sing all the chant, including the psalms, as the men do in the other services.
The BBC Radio 3 website should make all the episodes of this day of Gregorian Chant, Polyphony, and other liturgical music styles available to listen to after their broadcasts.
Image Credit (Public Domain): Illumination from Hildegard's Scivias (1151) showing her receiving a vision and dictating to teacher Volmar.