Preces and Responses - Nia Llewelyn Jones

Duration: 6'30"
Ensemble: Trebles organ
Grading: Easy/Medium
CMP245 Full score £3.00

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These responses are a simple set, written for the inaugural set of Girl Choristers at Gloucester Cathedral, and first performed at their second Evensong. The voice parts are pleasingly melodic, with flashes of rhythmic flair, and minimal divisi. The organ part provides both colour and ample support to the voices, with plenty of scope for bright registration. The responses are based on sequences of parallel fifths, evoking an organum-style soundworld, coupled with more contemporary harmonic progressions. A climax is reached at 'Because there is none other...'; the large crescendo and increasing rhythmic and harmonic interest peaks at 'God', but immediately subsides in awe, with a dramatic 'forte piano'.

This was written to make the most of the unparalleled acoustic of the quire of Gloucester Cathedral, but the drama is equally effective in a drier building. The responses are suitable for any group of upper voices from cathedral choristers to school choirs, due to their simple, attractive nature.