Recordings of “Dormi Jesu” & “I Wonder as I Wander”

Here are the recordings of the two pieces premiered this month: “Dormi Jesu” performed by Cantorum, and “I Wonder as I Wander” performed by the Combined Choirs & Philharmonic Orchestra at BYU. I was so happy with how both of these turned out and learned a lot while writing both.

Hope you enjoy them and share them with everyone you know! Happy/Merry Christmas!

“Dormi Jesu” Premieres This Friday!

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Friends, my newest Advent piece, “Dormi Jesu”–which was commissioned by Cantorum–premieres this Friday, November 22nd at 7 PM at the Orem Public Library. The mini-concert is FREE and you should go. They’re also singing a bunch of other great music by Byrd, Schütz, Howells and the like.

In addition, Cantorum is also singing their full concert on Monday, December 9th at 8 PM in St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, also in Orem. This is a fantastic church with great acoustics and generous people who have been supporting Cantorum, and it’s mission, since the beginning. This concert is also FREE and you should go. This will be their full Advent concert, and will be singing a bunch of other glorious pieces.

New Piece: Dormi Jesu

In the business associated with these last few weeks I’ve neglected to mention the new piece I’ve finished writing for Cantorum. It’s a new setting of “Dormi Jesu” (Often called “The Virgin’s Cradle Hymn”) by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. It’s a simple, sweet, little setting of a lullaby for the infant Christ. I was supposed to write a setting of “Vox Clara Ecce Intonant,” but that just didn’t work out. I had to go for a simpler text. I think this fits the bill beautifully. I can’t wait to hear Cantorum perform this!

Dormi, Jesu! Mater ridet
Quae tam dulcem somnum videt,
Dormi, Jesu! blandule!
Sleep, sweet babe! my cares beguiling:
Mother sits beside thee smiling;
Sleep, my darling, tenderly!
Si non-dormis, Mater plorat,
Inter fila cantans orat,
Blande, veni, somnule.
If thou sleep not, mother mourneth,
Singing as her wheel she turneth:
Come, soft slumber, balmily!

Dormi Jesu

New Commission for Cantorum

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A lot has been happening since I last posted. I might cover the other goings on later, but right now I wanted to share that I’ve received a new commission from Utah-based, early music ensemble Cantorum. This is the ensemble, directed by my friend Allen Buskirk, that I sang in as well as directed.

It’s a great ensemble with a great sound specializing in sacred music from the Renaissance and early Baroque. I had a lot of fun both singing in and directing this wonderful group of singers. The piece they have commissioned is for their advent-themed concert this December. We both agreed to a great advent hymn called “Vox clara ecce intonat.” Here are the words (with a poetic translation):

VOX clara ecce intonat,
obscura quaeque increpat:
procul fugentur somnia;
ab aethere Christus promicat.
A THRILLING voice by Jordan rings,
rebuking guilt and darksome things:
vain dreams of sin and visions fly;
Christ in His might shines forth on high.
Mens iam resurgat torpida
quae sorde exstat saucia;
sidus refulget iam novum,
ut tollat omne noxium.
Now let each torpid soul arise,
that sunk in guilt and wounded lies;
see! the new Star’s refulgent ray
shall chase disease and sin away.
E sursum Agnus mittitur
laxare gratis debitum;
omnes pro indulgentia
vocem demus cum lacrimis,
The Lamb descends from heaven above
to pardon sin with freest love:
for such indulgent mercy shewn
with tearful joy our thanks we own.
Secundo ut cum fulserit
mundumque horror cinxerit,
non pro reatu puniat,
sed nos pius tunc protegat.
That when again He shines revealed,
and trembling worlds to terror yield.
He give not sin its just reward,
but in His love protect and guard.
Summo Parenti gloria
Natoque sit victoria,
et Flamini laus debita
per saeculorum saecula. Amen.
To the most high Parent glory be
and to the Son be victory,
and to the Spirit praise is owed
from age to age eternally. Amen.

I’m very excited to get started!