A Christmas alleluia: for SATB choir and organ

Inglis, Brian ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0662-4693 (2015) A Christmas alleluia: for SATB choir and organ. [Composition]


This carol-anthem sets a text by Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179) - her Alleluia-verse for the Virgin Mary O virga mediatrix - in both the original Latin and the poetic English rendering by Barbara Newman. The setting for choir and organ seeks to interpret the theological concepts embodied in the text through musical means, such as imitation of pealing and tolling bells and attendant invocation of these sounds' connotative functions of praise, celebration, ceremony and mystery. Elements of indeterminacy are deployed to create rhythmic flow and textures of some complexity, which can nevertheless be assimilated and achieved by amateur/young performers. (Theologically this evokes the praise of angelic choirs.) The musical materials also include reference to the Indian ragas Bhairavi and Bhimpalashri, which I discovered were similar to the opening passage I had devised - a rise up through different vocal registers from a low organ pedal drone. Their inclusion has a number of starting points: a visit to India (encompassing the Christian region of Goa) in 2011; the presence at Middlesex University of Indian composition students from our partner college, the KM Conservatoire in Chennai; and a desire to move beyond the usual contexts for a Christmas carol-anthem.

Item Type: Composition
Additional Information: Commissioned by Jeremy Rouse for the chapel choir of Bedford College. First performances: 4 and 6 December 2015. Words from Hildegard of Bingen's Alleluia verse O Virga Mediatrix.
Research Areas: A. > School of Media and Performing Arts > Performing Arts > Music group
Item ID: 18093
Useful Links:
Depositing User: Brian Inglis
Date Deposited: 14 Oct 2015 09:29
Last Modified: 21 Aug 2019 11:37
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/18093

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Activity Overview
6 month trend
6 month trend

Additional statistics are available via IRStats2.