George Herbert Motets
Premiere: March 6, 2011 / Trinity Church in the City of Boston / Frank Pesci
Instrumentation: SATB with optional keyboard
Duration: 7:00' combined
Text: George Herbert (1593 - 1633)
Suitable for advanced High School, collegiate, or professional choirs
Appropriate for worship or concert performance
These motets are part of a set composed in January 2011 in Hyde Park, Massachusetts for the Choirs of Trinity Church in Boston's Copley Square. Each piece exhibits a harmonic and rhythmic fluidity in response to the elegance and imagery of George Herbert's texts, which marry religious ecstasy and human need. The specific texts chosen for these pieces express a longing for beauty and sweetness to counter dullness and a sense of languishing.
Click each title below to purchase sheet music from ECS/Canticle
Love is that liquor sweet and most divine which my God feels as blood, but I as wine.
Sweetest of sweets, I thank you: when displeasure did through my bodie, wound my mind, you took me thence; and in your house of pleasure, a daintie lodging me assigned. Now I in you without a bodie move, rising and falling with your wings. Comfort I'll die if you poste from me, but if I travel in you companie, you know the way to heavens doore.
Why do I languish thus, drooping and dull, as if I were all earth? O give me quicknesse, that I may with mirth praise Thee brimfull. Thou are my lovelinesse, my light, Beautie alone to me: when all perfections as but one appeare that they Thy form doth show, the very dust that where Thy dost tread and go, makes beauties here; Lord, cleare Thy gift, that with a constant wit, I may but look toward Thee.