Sunday, April 18, 2021

Psalm 104 and William Lovelady's setting

I went looking this morning for a recording of William Lovelady's setting for the 104th Psalm as performed yesterday during funeral services for the Prince Philip at St. George's Chapel, Windsor. 

All of the music performed by a four-voice ensemble during the funeral was remarkable, but this was the piece I liked especially.

Philip had commissioned Lovelady (b. 1945, left), a composer and guitarist, to write the piece --- in its original form a cantata for up to 80 voices --- for his 75th birthday a quarter century ago and had directed that it be performed at his funeral, too. This is a condensed version, arranged with the composer's permission.

The words parallel some of the themes from the first lesson of the day, taken at Philip's direction (as was everything else in the service) from the book of Ecclesiasticus (or Sirach), considered apocryphal by Anglicans but part of the Catholic and Orthodox canon.

Whatever the case, it's been a lovely way to begin a Sunday morning. 

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