Composer:   Eric Whitacre
Arranger:   NA
Publisher:   Shadow Water Music
Edition:   HL 08745015
Voicing:   SATB div
Setting:   A Cappella


Lee Nelson
St. Cloud State University 2007
R&R Chair College & University

At first sight, this work appears dense and rather difficult, but upon closer examination, you will find the piece is very accessible. Whitacre ingeniously crafts this work as a double choir canon, set one measure apart. After your choir learns the choir one part, they will have learned the entire piece (with the exception of a few short passages). When performed in canon, the overall effect is a rich and grandiose setting of this Oriana text. A possible programming idea is to pair this work with one of the English madrigals from The Triumph of Oriana, a collection of English madrigals in honor of Queen Elizabeth in which every piece ends with the same line, “Long live fair Oriana!” A well known madrigal from this collection is Bennet’s “All Creatures now are Merry Minded” which provides an interesting contrast to Whitacre’s piece.