Duration: 7'00" |
Ensemble: SATB organ
These evening canticles borrow heavily from the progressions and melodic idioms of the Blues. Other stylistic elements include funk, fauxbourdon harmony and a tone row. Unusually for one of my pieces, there is very little counterpoint; instead the music is propelled by a persistent bass riff in the organ part.
The Magnificat is not the usual paean of jubilation and celebration, but instead is brooding and dissonant, as though Mary's simple joy is seen against the backdrop of an oppressive and turbulent world. This mood changes to one of subdued radiance in the Nunc Dimittis: Simeon spoke also of coming tribulation. This service would be ideal for penitential seasons and for sombre occasions.
The Fourth Service is dedicated to the memory of my dear friend Claire Taylor, who died in 2005.