Adiemus - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Who/what is Adiemus?
What does Adiemus sound like?
What music has Adiemus released?
What about Merry Christmas To The World?
Where can I get Adiemus' music?
Does Adiemus do live performances?
Didn't I hear Adiemus on (...)?
What are the backgrounds of the members of Adiemus?
      Postscript: A letter from Miriam Stockley
How can I contact Adiemus?
Is there a Fan Club?
Credits & Sources

For answers to even more frequently asked questions, check the Discussion Area.

Who/what is Adiemus?
        Plainly speaking, Adiemus can perhaps most conveniently be summarized as a "new age" or "progressive" Karl Jenkins musical project, though their music is not easy to categorize, incorporating elements of classical, opera and even tribal music. Karl Jenkins is the composer, conductor and all-around nexus of the ensemble. Miriam Stockley is the lead vocalist, with Mary Carewe providing harmonies in the choruses on three of the Adiemus albums. The music is performed by the London Philharmonic Orchestra on the first three albums and the 'Adiemus Orchestra' on The Eternal Knot. Other participants in Adiemus include Mike Ratledge (programmed percussion on Songs of Sanctuary), Pamela Thorby (recorder solos), and Jody Barratt-Jenkins (electro-acoustic percussion). A collection of additional "Adiemus Singers" have performed in various combinations on Dances of Time and in live performances. On Dances of Time, they include: Annamari Kähärä, Mia Simanainen, Nina Tapio, Mervi Hiltunen, Säde Rissanen, Mia Simanainen and Riikka Väyrynen. Other Adiemus singers include: Hanna-Riikka Siitonen, Hanna Kaila, Pirjo Aittomäki, Merja Rajala, Veera Railio.
        There are no lyrics, per se, in their music. Karl Jenkins states in the booklets for Songs of Sanctuary and Cantata Mundi that the text is "an invented language". (The word Adiemus itself is not Latin, but is, according to Jenkins, invented as part of his sound-language.) He writes, "The text was written phonetically with the words viewed as instrumental sound, the idea being to maximise the melisma (an expressive vocal phrase) by removing the distraction, if one can call it that, of words."



What does Adiemus sound like?
        As with many musical artists, of course, the answer to that question depends on who you ask—though they have been frequently compared to artists such as Enya, Enigma, Dead Can Dance, and Deep Forest. Because of the unique qualities of their sound, however, no direct comparison can ever be completely sufficient.
        The prominent sounds in the music of Adiemus are the diverse melodical chants and vocal stylings of Miriam Stockley, the harmonies of Mary Carewe and "the Adiemus singers", and the powerful backing of the London Philharmonic. Karl Jenkins himself describes the music as "an extended choral-type work based on the European classical tradition, but where the vocal sound is more akin to 'ethnic' or 'world' music"; in his words, "The sound is universal, as is the language of music [...] this music is somewhere to escape to."



What music has Adiemus released?
        To date, Adiemus has released four full-length works, Songs of Sanctuary, Cantata Mundi, Dances of Time and The Eternal Knot. A best-of compilation entitled The Journey has also been released in some territories. Check the
Discography for more information about availablity, as well as Adiemus CD singles/remixes.
        Separately, the members of Adiemus have produced a wide variety of music. Miriam Stockley has had an extensive career as a backing vocalist for TV, film, and several advertisements, with a sadly out-of-print record, Praise, and released a solo album entitled Miriam in 1999; Jenkins and Ratledge, both former members of the band Soft Machine, have also recorded music for film, TV, advertisements and theater; and Mary Carewe has recorded a number of songs for stage productions in England, as well as performing on Original Scores From The MGM Classics—she also recently released a solo album, Blah Blah Blah, featuring cabaret and showtune songs.
        For more detailed information, please see the Discography and the biographical listings below. Also check out the Discography on Miriam Stockley's official website for a comprehensive list of her work.



What about Merry Christmas To The World?
        Merry Christmas To The World is not an Adiemus album per se although the arrangements of traditional seasonal music and new compositions are performed by the Adiemus artists in a highly similar style. The album was released in Germany only as a special promotion and although 35,000 were supposedly pressed, second hand copies are extremely hard to come by. Full details are published in
Miriam Stockley's Discography (Contributions). The album is considered a must listen by Adiemus fans worldwide.



Where can I get Adiemus' music?
        Why, from the website's
Music Store, of course. We carry all of the main Adiemus/Jenkins releases, as well as several items of related interest. For the harder-to-find items, feel free to use the Discussion Area to post a message asking about particular Adiemus items for sale. Aside from Merry Christmas To The World, all of the albums are readily available from both High Street and online shops.



Does Adiemus do live performances?
        Yes, so far in Europe and Japan only; many of them have been talked about in the
Discussion Area in depth. To date, no U.S. performances have been done, and there are no known plans for any U.S. concerts in the works. The project's performance at the Royal Albert Hall to launch The Eternal Knot is reviewed and the program is available online at Miriam Stockley's website features section.



Didn't I hear Adiemus on (...)?
        Adiemus was most widely heard in the US as the background music to a Delta Airlines commercial, which uses the song "Adiemus" from Songs of Sanctuary; the commercial was widely seen in Europe before presently being aired in the US. Ansett Australia Airlines used Adiemus in their ad campaign in 1995. "Cantilena" was used for a British Cheltenham & Gloucester television commercial. European listeners report that a prototype of "Rain Dance" was used for a Fa Shower Gel television commercial. Jenkins and Stockley have done many other television and radio adverts together and on their own.
        As mentioned above, the members of Adiemus have provided music and vocals for several TV shows, films, and advertisements; check Ms. Stockley's and Ms. Carewe's official web sites for detailed listings of their individual appearances.



What are the backgrounds of the members of Adiemus?
        Biographical information for
Miriam Stockley and Mary Carewe may be obtained from their official sites (follow their respective links), along with information about their numerous projects outside of Adiemus. Finally, also see this letter from Miriam Stockley taken from our Discussion Board, which offers many details on the formation and inner workings of Adiemus.



How can I contact Adiemus?
       
UK Online gives the following address to write to for further information on Adiemus: PO Box 539, High Wycombe, Bucks, HP12 4BR, UK. Additionally, you can write e-mail to Miriam Stockley at MiriamStockley@msn.com, or to. Mary Carewe at mary@marycarewe.com.
        To contact Karl Jenkins offices, write: Helen Hodkinson, Manager or Marie Jarman, Production Assistant at Karl Jenkins Music Ltd, 26 Fouberts Place, London W1V 1HG; telephone +44 (0) 209 434 3225, fax +44 (0) 209 999 3225. Also check the official Karl Jenkins site, www.karljenkins.com.



Is there an Adiemus Fan Club?
        Yes, there is an Adiemus Worldwide Fan Club and it is run by Suvi Kaikkonen from Finland. It publishes three feature filled newsletters each year and has members from every corner of the globe. Click
here for the details.



Credits & Sources
        This FAQ was originally written by
Noah Grey (noah@noahgrey.com). Updates have been made to the FAQ by the current webmaster team. Noah and the team thank the numerous visitors to the Adiemus Unofficial Home Page that have provided information used in this FAQ; and special gratitude is due to Miriam Stockley, Mary Carewe and Karl Jenkins Music, for their input into and kind words about this site.
        Adiemus is Copyright © Karl Jenkins Music LTD/Virgin Records LTD, and is hereby acknowledged.



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