Bernard Hughes' Psalm 56 for unaccompanied SATB choir.
This work was the winner of the Elysian Singers Composition Competition in celebration of the choir's 30th anniversary. It was premiered on 15 October 2016 at St. James's Church, Piccadilly, London by the Elysian Singers, conducted by Sam Laughton.
Duration: approx. 3 1/2 minutes.
"It opens with a lively but gritty Dorian melody that the composer then develops, suitably reflecting the anger present in the Psalm text. However, two unexpected things occur: first, the composer sets the original Psalm inscription 'To the chief Musician...' in a kind of remote faux-bourdon style, and then he uses Latin for the final verse, together with a slower and more lush choral style".
Choir & Organ, December 2017.
"It will be a rare church choir that can negotiate the rhythmic vitality and tonal complexity of Bernard Hughes’s Psalm 56. Unaccompanied, and with a text few composers have probably set before (‘mine enemies would daily swallow me up’), it includes the dedication ‘to the chief musician upon Jonath-elem-rechokim, Michtam of David’ set to music. Nevertheless, this could be most effective in performance".
Sunday By Sunday, December 2017