GENERAL SACRED

Alleluia

SATB, a cappella

Your choir will love the simple, yet rich nature of this setting of the Alleluia text. This piece is appropriate for the advanced middle and high school choirs.

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Be Thou My Vision

3-Part Mixed Voices and Piano, with optional Handbells

An arrangement of the traditional Irish melody, the lyric continuously grows into a musical confession of one’s faith. The piano comfortably supports the voices, and the handbells become an additional voice providing further embellishment to the well-known tune. This arrangement was written in dedication to Sara Mahaffy for her 40 years of service as organist for Ashland United Methodist Church in St. Joseph, Missouri. Also available as solo. Handbell part score included.

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Blow Thy Trumpet

SATB, a cappella
SSAA, a cappella

This a cappella work takes inspiration for its melody from Johann Sebastian Bach’s Chorale No. 212. Perfect as a sight-singing example for the classroom or as a short concert performance piece.

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A Child’s Song of Christmas

This lyrical Christmas poem gets an equal treatment with a folk-like melody and simple harmonies that illustrate the humble beginnings of Christ’s birth.  Available in multiple voicings, this song is appropriate for all ages at school concerts, worship services, and other musical performances.

Score Previews: SATB SAB SSA Unison/Two-Part

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Christmas Carol

The bells are ringing out with this boisterous Christmas anthem!  Not to be confused with the Charles Dickens classic, this musical setting of Dunbar’s poem gives a vivid illustration of the yuletide while the piano incorporates bell-like clusters and occasional lyrical arpeggiations.  The work segues to a tranquil parallel minor before returning to the original for the celebratory finale.

Score Previews: SATB SAB SSA TTB

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Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing

SATB, Solo and Piano

A new arrangement for the familiar Robert Robinson text. The second verse features a solo accompanied by only the choir. This new setting will be a welcomed feature in your church service performance.

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God is Love

SATB and Piano, with optional Handbells (1-Octave) and Horn in F

Adapting the scripture 1 John 4:7-18, this empowering anthem will be a great gift to those whom we continue to love through our life’s journey. First performed on Mother’s Day, it is a fitting setting for any celebratory holiday. Commissioned in loving memory of Connie Agnew.

Chancel Choir of Ashland United Methodist Church in St. Joseph, Missouri, directed by Shaun Agnew

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Preview recording: Chancel Choir of Ashland United Methodist Church, St. Joseph, Missouri

Good News from Heaven the Angels Sing

(A Christmas Carol for Children)

Perfect as a processional introit or concert opener, this triumphant setting of the Martin Luther text gives a grand welcome to the Christmas season.  Features included repeated voicings, a contrasting legato bridge, and accents illustrating the calling from the angels.  This work can be learned in a few rehearsals and will be an enjoyment for your audiences at your next concert or worship service.

Score Previews: SATB SAB SSA TTB Unison/Two-Part

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He Will Illumine My Soul to You

SATB, a cappella

Using verses from the books of Isaiah and Matthew, the theme of light is ever present.  This a cappella setting uses a homophonic texture mostly throughout the work, with variances for one voice to progress the work forward.  The penultimate section with layering motifs create a tranquil, mystical atmosphere to illustrate heaven.  This work can be used throughout the worship calendar year for church choir, and can be used as an intimate performance setting for your next school choir concert.

Performance by the Ashland Vocal Ensemble
Ashland United Methodist Church (St. Joseph, MO)
Sunday, October 1, 2023

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How Great Thou Art

Solo, SATB and Piano

One of the greatest and well-known hymns of all time is a proud declaration of God’s almighty power.  This arrangement works to recreate that power as a mighty and triumphal praise song.  Every voice in the choir gets their own feature, including a soloist and even the piano accompanist!  You will not want to miss out on this arrangement of the all-time classic hymn.

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A Hymn on the Nativity of My Savior

The definitive opening hits from the piano begin this triumphant work appropriate for the Christmas season.  The echoic texture of the voices illustrates the resounding nature of the text before the chorus expands to traditional harmonic chords.  A contrasting middle section gives more motion to the work before building to a recapitulation of the opening stanza.  This will be a great opener for your choirs at your holiday concert or worship service.

Score Previews: SATB SAB SSA TTB

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I Can Do All Things

SATB and Piano

Using the popular scripture Phillippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”, the gentle words are given support by a propulsive ballad accompaniment and lyrical melodic treatment. Premiered November 9, 2008 by the Chancel Choir at Ashland United Methodist Church in St. Joseph, Missouri.

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It Is No Secret (What God Can Do)

TTBB and Piano

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Kyrie, Christe, Illumina

SSA, a cappella

Combining the Latin texts from the Ordinarium Missae and Psalm 30, this setting for unaccompanied women’s chorus creates a sanctuary for the voices. Beginning with cascading figures, the lyrical voice-leading allows the work to optimize its traditional harmonies and simplistic chordal progressions for the singers to easily blend. The Illumina section becomes the crux of the work accented by a key change and supportive lines from all voices, including an alto divisi. Perfect for festival and general concerts – can also be used in worship services.

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Laudate!

SATB Divisi, unaccompanied

Laudate! is a celebratory work of excitement and praise. After its boisterous opening, the energy of the song takes off with differing motifs and rhythmic figures in each voice before the chorus unites in large, harmonic textures.  The anticipation builds again before returning to the polyphonic section from before. The work slightly slows down, while maintaining its energetic spirit, creating polychordal harmonies. The uptempo energy comes back once more and builds through the key change and rollicking finale (similar to the beginning).  Each voice section gets featured in this work, and would be a great opener at your next concert.  This work is suitable for advanced high school, collegiate, and community choruses.

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Music on Christmas Morning

SATB and Piano

This poem by the young nineteenth-century poet Anne Bronte gives a vivid stance on the power of music, specifically during the Christmas season, that glorifies the light of the Holy Spirit and dashes away the darkness of evil.  An easy, jazzy approach is given to the musical setting of the text with variations in texture to feature each voice section.  Contrasting sections in the parallel keys as well as an unaccompanied verse complete this work.  Your church choir will enjoy performing this warm song for your audience during the yuletide celebrations and worship services.

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O Holy Night

SATB and Piano with opt. Violin and Cello

This is a masterful rendition of the renowned Christmas carol. With the chorus gently opening in unison (and closing in the same way), the audience is then taken on a beautiful lyrical journey. The part-writing in each of the voices give the chorus the opportunity to blend and even make the chords ring with excitement throughout the work. The instruments uses triplets and duplets interchangeably throughout the work as they seemlessly accompany the lyrics to the beloved tune. Your violinist and cellist will have a performance outreach as they play their respective melodic lines. The key change further explores the optimism and hope the Christmas season brings, culminating in a thunderous vibrant moment on the word “glory”, proclaiming the power of His majesty before tapering into the divine night. The audience will be inspired with your choir’s performance of this work.

Violin and cello part scores are included.

Commissioned by Ashland United Methodist Church of St. Joseph, Missouri for their 2022 Christmas Eve services.

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Redeemer

TTBB and Piano

Starting with an a cappella verse and chorus, this worshipful power ballad is definitely one to highlight the men in your church choir!  This is an inspirational message for all listeners, supported in this arrangement by the piano accompaniment building from beginning to end with lyrical arpeggiations and powerful chordings.

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A Spotless Rose

SATB, a cappella

Based on Isaiah 11:1, this 15th century German carol poem was translated to English by Catherine Winkworth around the turn of the 20th century.  The illustration of the rosebud blossoming from the tender root is metaphoric to the birth of Jesus from the Virgin Mary.  This tranquil a cappella setting features an echo-like repetition of the first stanza, and divisi for all parts in the second.

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Surely the Presence of the Lord

SATB and Piano

This contemporary church song by Lanny Wolfe has become a beloved staple for modern worship.  This simplistic yet wholesome arrangment is accessible for the small-medium church choir and will be an excellent addition to your choral library.

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Te Cubrirá (Salmo 91)

SSA, a cappella

The words from Psalm (Salmo) 91:4-5 are given this musical setting from the Catholic liturgy. Influences of Gregorian chant and Renaissance polyphony are evident. Each voice part is given a lyrical flair while still creating traditional harmonies and neighboring key modulations throughout the work. This setting of the sacred Spanish text is appropriate for your women’s chorus for festivals and general concerts.

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Worthy is the Lamb

3 SSAATTBB Choruses, a cappella

This setting emulates the myriad of 24 angels singing together in the Revelation scripture. Three separate choirs of SSAATTBB voicing unite on the beginning and ending sections. The middle section has the first chorus establish their respective voice melodies on an Alleluia, then continued on as the second chorus sings the same patterns but augmented, and the third chorus sings an augmentation of the second chorus’ patterns. An ambitious composition for advanced high school, collegiate, and community choral ensembles.

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Other songs composed or arranged, but not yet available for purchasing:

The Little Road to Bethlehem by Michael Head — Two-Part and Piano