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Love Was My Lord and King!: No. 3. Crossing the Bar (SATB Chamber Orchestra Version)

By Gwyneth W. Walker

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SATB choir, piano or chamber orchestra - Intermediate
Composed by Gwyneth W. Walker (1947-). 21st Century. Octavo. Published by E.C. Schirmer Publishing (EC.6378).

Item Number: EC.6378

ISBN 600313463785. 8.5" x 11" inches. Text: Alfred Lord Tennyson.

Crossing the Bar creates images of the sea, with the "final voyage" leading us out across the water, to see our "Pilot, face to face." The musical setting endeavors to express the growth from peaceful to ecstatic moods, the tolling of the bell, the meeting of the Pilot. "May there be no moaning of the bar, when I put out to see."

The poetry of Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809-1892) is characterized by dark, yet transcendent imagery -- the depths of the ocean, the triumph of the spirit. These poems seem well-suited to musical settings for Men's Chorus. The deep tones. The sonority of male voices (perhaps speaking for the poet) rising in song.

Throughout the varied imagery of this poetry -- the depth of the sea, the dark of the night, the tumult of passion and the acceptance of death -- there speaks one, central message. "Love was my lord and king."

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