Ecce Nova is a work for SATB, a cappella choir based on the 4th century hymn “O lux beata Trinitas” and a Latin translation of Revelation 21:3-7. In this piece, I sought to express the character and text of each movement generally through the tone of the music itself but also through various musical devices. Fanfare and dance-like rhythms in the first movement evoke jubilation, while dissonances occur at the end of the second movement on the Latin words meaning "mourning," "crying," and "pain."
In the third movement, two soprano soloists sing Latin text that translates to "Behold, I am making all things new. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end." The melodies that they sing to this text form a canon in retrograde inversion - as one melody moves forward, the other melody is sung backwards and upside down. In this way, the soloists sing the beginning and ending of the melody simultaneously, reflecting that God is the beginning and the end. The piece concludes on the proclamations “Praise him!” and Factum est!, meaning “It is done!”
Even as we praise God here and now, we long for the coming day when we will worship him eternally without the weight of sin and sorrow, when the former things will pass away and God’s ongoing redemptive work among humanity will truly be finished.
This is the garden
By E. E. Cummings
This is the garden: colours come and go,
Frail azures fluttering from night’s outer wing,
Strong silent greens silently lingering,
Absolute lights like baths of golden snow.
This is the garden: pursed lips do blow
Upon cool flutes within wide glooms, and sing,
Of harps celestial to the quivering string,
Invisible faces hauntingly and slow.
This is the garden. Time shall surely reap,
And on Death’s blade lie many a flower curled,
In other lands where other songs be sung;
Yet stand They here enraptured, as among
The slow deep trees perpetual of sleep
Some silver-fingered fountain steals the world.
performed by KC VITAs Chamber Choir
Three Night Songs (2018)
For solo soprano, piano accompaniment
Poetry by Pulitzer-winning, Nebraska poet, Ted Kooser.
I. Flying at Night (0:01)
II. A Quarter Moon Just Before Dawn (2:00)
III. Starlight (3:38)
Performance by Meredith Wohlgemuth
Electroacoustic & Electronic Music
"Sympathetic resonance" is the phenomenon in which a vibrating string, such as a piano string, causes a second string previously at rest to vibrate. In order for this to happen, the two strings must share the same note or similar overtones. In Resonances I recorded samples of piano strings sympathetically vibrating, and then I transformed those samples to create different moods and textures. Every sound in Resonances is derived from the sound of piano strings alone.