Jubilate Deo

Jubilate Deo was commissioned by Music Celebrations International for the Beethoven Choral Festival. Using the Jubilate text, the piece incorporates various motifs from Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. It will be premiered on June 15, 2022 at St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna under the direction of Dr. Marc Ashley Foster.

Scoring: SATB, organ, optional brass quartet
Text: Psalm 100
Duration: 5:30
Publisher: manuscript

PERUSAL SCORE: coming soon
RECORDING: coming soon

PROGRAM NOTES:
This was a fun piece to write, much like putting together a puzzle! I was thrilled and honored to receive this commission, not only due to the prestige of the festival in Vienna, but also because conductor Marc Ashley Foster and MCI President John Wiscombe have been dear friends, colleagues, and collaborators for nearly two decades.

Since the festival featured the music of Beethoven (originally to celebrate his 250th birthday, then twice delayed by COVID), Marc and John asked me to compose a piece that would “evoke” the Ninth Symphony, while still giving me the freedom to create something that sounded contemporary and original. I felt that the Jubilate Deo text (“Sing joyfully to God”) was a fitting companion to Friedrich Schiller’s An die Freude (“Ode to Joy”).

I decided to adapt (or, in some instances, directly quote) two passages from each of the symphony’s first three movements. The first two measures of the “Ode the Joy” theme from the fourth movement appear in three different places throughout the piece. I also used a portion of the “Ode to Joy” theme in retrograde to create the melody for the “Laudate nomen ejus” section.

At the Name of Jesus

At the Name of Jesus was composed in 2008 and has finally found a home at St. James Music Press!

Scoring: SATB, organ
Text: Caroline Maria Noel
Duration: 3:10
Publisher: St. James Music Press

PERUSAL SCORE & RECORDING

Strength

Strength was commissioned by the Kentucky Music Educators Association - originally for the 2021 KMEA All-State High School TTBB Choir, but delayed due to COVID-19 and eventually premiered at the 2022 KMEA conference under the direction of Dr. Eugene Rogers (University of Michigan).

Scoring: TTBB, piano
Text: Rabindranath Tagore
Duration: 4:30
Publisher: manuscript

PERUSAL SCORE: coming soon
RECORDING: coming soon

Sing with Me

We have faced a relentless series of heartaches in 2020, one right after another. The uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, the anguish of not being able to sing together, disturbing social justice issues… all of these have tested our resolve.

During the summer, I composed Sing with Me as my own personal response to these concerns; it is the first piece for which I have also written the text. At the time, I was unsure of what the fall semester would look like for my own choir. Would we be in person? If so, how long might that last? Would we have to transition to online learning again? Therefore, I designed the piece to be accessible and adaptable to whatever situation we faced. 

My wonderful students at EKU recorded this piece as a virtual choir. It premiered on Monday, November 23 on YouTube (see below).

Scoring: SATB, piano
Text: Richard Waters (see below)
Duration: 2:00
Publisher: manuscript

PERUSAL SCORE

RECORDING (ChoralTracks)

VIRTUAL WORLD PREMIERE (EKU Combined Choirs)


TEXT:
Sing with me, as I sing with you,
Let the music revive us anew;
Yearning for beautiful harmony,
Come and sing with me.

All the world is longing for peace,
For all meaningless hatred to cease;
Joining together, your hand in mine,
Let our voices shine!

Dream with us, together as one,
For the day when the battle is done;
Fervently striving for unity,
Come and dream with me.

Come and sing with me.

(c) Copyright 2020 by Richard Waters. All rights reserved.


Now on MusicSpoke!

I am delighted to have been added to the roster of talented composers on MusicSpoke. Three of my pieces are now available:
  • Come, Sweet Peace (commissioned by James Madison University; Harrisonburg, VA)
  • Great Is the Lord (composed for Delta State University; Cleveland, MS)
  • My Song (commissioned by Hopkins High School; Minnetonka, MN)

3/16/2020