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Tears of the Angels

By John Tavener

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String Ensemble
Composed by John Tavener (1944-). Score Only. Chester Music #MUSCH61212. Published by Chester Music (BT.MUSCH61212).

Item Number: BT.MUSCH61212


This work for string ensemble was commissioned by the BT Scottish Ensemble, and was first performed in June 1996 at the Hellenic Centre, London, by the BT Scottish Ensemble with Clio Gould (violin).

Quoting Tavener: Tears ofthe Angels should be played at the extreme breaking point of 'tenderness'. In other words, totally beyond our compassion, and beyond our comprehension. Wrapped in a depth of inner silence of which we have no idea, a stateof being, not an emotion, a tender light piercing the agonising darkness of the world. Also, a humility, of which we have no idea, because it is not rooted in a hypocritcal or contrived deprecation of self, but in the blindingvision of God Himself.

Since we are 'human' and not angels, the music can only be 'imagined' by us. All th strings are muted throughout, except for the part marked solo violin. The solo violin is 'the chief among theAngels', and the whole piece must sound 'serene' and 'seemless'.

Duration c. 17mins.

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