Tenor part from Jesus of Nazareth, Savior and King

Joseph Sowa
5 minutes
Modern classical music

Suitable for Easter season, this new setting of Hugh Dougall’s text “Jesus of Nazareth, Savior and King” came as a response to Joseph Young's request to write a new work for his Boston-based ensemble, the Genesis Chamber Singers. It was to be performed on a concert programmed around works that shared common influences: the same text, the same source melody, etc.

I took as my inspiration the “Pange Lingua” plainchant. The original text is about the Last Supper, and I paired that melody with a Eucharistic text from the Latter-Day Saint tradition. This juxtaposition interwove threads of influence both musical and personal. The work doesn’t just grace a version of the melody with a new text. In so doing, it echoes and honors the spiritual heritage bequeathed by my Polish and Spanish Catholic forebears and the way their faith has influenced my life: transformed but indebted with gratitude.

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