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The Dream of the Rood

for four voices and instrumental ensemble

By John Casken

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4 voices (Countertenor, 2 Tenors and Bass) and ensemble (1(afl, pic), vib, mar, bell plate, sizz cym, Swiss cow bell, gong [horizontal], tam-t, 2 bng, 2slit drum, wood drum, 2cong, 2b.d, marac, 5tempbl, vibraslap)-hp-str(
For four voices and instrumental ensemble. Composed by John Casken (1949-). This edition: Saddle stitching. Sheet music. Schott. Study score. Composed 2008. 124 pages. Duration 30'. Schott Music #ED 13468. Published by Schott Music (HL.49043942).

Item Number: HL.49043942

8.25x11.75 inches. English.

The Anglo-Saxon poem The Dream of the Rood was probably written in the 8th Century and is the earliest dream-vision poem in Old English. A fragment of the poem from the section that describes the crucifixion can be found carved on the Ruthwell Cross in Dumfriesshire, and set in stone at a time when Ruthwell was part of the ancient kingdom of Northumbria. In responding to a commission for the Hilliard Ensemble, I was keen to find a dramatic text, but one that would also invite a musical response appropriate to the very nature of this kind of vocal quartet. Writing for the Hilliards together with a mixed instrumental ensemble, and for a generous cathedral acoustic, has had a strong influence on the types of textures and sonorities I have used. The structure of the work is dictated by the form of the poem, but the music could also be seen as consisting of a sequence of motets with both vocal and instrumental interludes.John Casken.

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