Tsunami Requiem - Full Score & Parts View larger

Tsunami Requiem - Full Score & Parts

FS002

A moving and intense work telling the story of the devastating tsunami in 2004.

As a conductor, it is always rewarding to work with choirs on music that they feel excited, moved and challenged by. The Tsunami Requiem, which tells the story of the devastating tsunami which hit Nagapattinam, a fishing village in Tamil Nadu, South India in 2004, does all of that with its contrasting moods, beautifully brought to life by the music. From the effervescent opening to the calm lilting of the lullaby, from the stirring, dissonant Dies Irae to the final moving lament. The very emotive subject matter is brought home to the singers and audience in a real and accessible way.


Graham Wili

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Additional Information

Composer Chris Williams
Duration 20 minutes
Difficulty level Easy/Moderate
Orchestration French horn, 4 trumpets, 2 tenor trombones, 1 bass trombone, Tuba, Timpani and percussion (2 players), Organ
Voice SATB/children

  • The first movement, Fishing Carol, tells the story of a typical day in a fishing village, beginning as the sun rises over the boats lined up on the shoreline. The children sing Kyrie eleison (Lord, have mercy) as the boats are rolled out to sea. 

  • The second movement, Pie Jesu, is a lullaby sung to calm the children who have a premonition of the tsunami. 

  • The third movement is an instrumental interlude, the calm before the storm, which explodes into the Dies Irae (Day of Wrath) depicting the tsunami itself. This lively, dissonant and stirring movement ends with the chorale-like Lachrymosa juxtaposed with the childrens bewilderment and despair at the destruction and loss, singing the words "Mother? Mother? Where have you gone?". 

  • The final movement is a threnody (lament) set to the words of the Agnus Dei (0 Lamb of God) for unaccompanied choir. The movement builds in intensity as the brass enter, not with the choir, but answering them almost in sympathy. 


Written for SATB choir, children's choir, brass, organ and percussion, this work is immensely powerful when performed in its entirety, however, it is also very flexible. Any of the four choral movements can be performed as stand alone pieces, with or without brass, equally at home in a small parish church or a large concert hall.

The work received with a standing ovation when performed at the Royal Festival Hall in 2008 and both singers and audiences were visibly moved by the music.

The Tsunami Requiem is going to be a work that makes people sit up and listen.


Mastersinger

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Tsunami Requiem - Full Score & Parts

Tsunami Requiem - Full Score & Parts

A moving and intense work telling the story of the devastating tsunami in 2004.

[blockquote author="Graham Wili" class=""]As a conductor, it is always rewarding to work with choirs on music that they feel excited, moved and challenged by. The Tsunami Requiem, which tells the story of the devastating tsunami which hit Nagapattinam, a fishing village in Tamil Nadu, South India in 2004, does all of that with its contrasting moods, beautifully brought to life by the music. From the effervescent opening to the calm lilting of the lullaby, from the stirring, dissonant Dies Irae to the final moving lament. The very emotive subject matter is brought home to the singers and audience in a real and accessible way. [/blockquote]

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