Songs of Consolation(1997)
Songs of Consolation is a song cycle by David Conte for soprano and organ.
The audio selections in the player to the right feature Heather Clemmens, soprano, and Rodney Gehrke, organ. Used with the permission of the composer. To listen, please click on the track name itself.
Program notes from the composer:
"Songs of Consolation was commissioned by the historic Old Presbyterian Meeting House, Alexandria, Virginia, for the inauguration of a new organ designed and installed by Mark Lively and Paul Fulcher. The work was composed for soprano Phyllis Bryn-Julson and organist Donald Sutherland, members of the faculty of the Peabody Conservatory, and was premiered by them on October 6th, 1997. The work is dedicated to the memory of General Kirby Lamar, a member of the congregation of the Meeting House. The three songs all speak to the comforting power of God's love to alleviate and lessen grief and suffering. The second song, "The God of Love My Shepherd Is," is based on a paraphrase of Psalm 23 by the Elizabethan poet George Herbert. Marked Andante, always buoyant, the song begins with serenity and confidence. The music becomes more agitated with the words: 'Yea, in death's shady black abode.' The song ends with a rapturous melissma for the singer."