The text of this week’s music offering, Prepare the Way of the Lord, comes right out of our reading from Isaiah for this Sunday. The familiar words, “Every valley shall be exalted, every hill made low, the crooked shall be made straight and the rough places plain,” are set to music by William Rowan (b.1951) of San Diego, California. William has a master’s degree in harpsichord performance, and this anthem shows off his skill in writing for the harpsichord. I recorded the harpsichord part and sent it out to our singers; soprano; Phred Mileski and Gerri Smith, alto; Nancy Lewandowski, tenor; Jim Myslik and bass Scott Konrad. When Scott did the mixing, he added oboe and strings and made it sound like we have a little chamber orchestra! We may never do this anthem again without cello and oboe.
Thank you, choir members, for taking time this week to bring us a lovely Advent anthem. Advent is an abridged season in the church year, but it has some of the most wonderful music, and I am thankful to be able to continue to do some of it, even if remotely.
I know that these words from Isaiah also bring to mind the tenor aria from the Messiah, and I encourage you to listen in to our Lessons and Carols video next week where Richard Pittsinger will sing that for us again.
Written by Darlene James