A Sea Liturgy
(Incidental Music for the play by Gloria Sawai) (1985)
by Ron Hannah

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     One of the more pleasant projects I have ever worked on, this was a chance to write expressive music for a powerful play.
A very un-Irish lethargy pervades A Sea Liturgy
Review by Liz Nichols, Edmonton Journal

.... You'll find yourself thankful for Ron Hannah's delicate original music .... and wishing he'd been more generous with it. What atmosphere there is, the music provides.

-- April 12, 1986

     The music includes a prologue featuring a choral entry (the Da Camera Singers dressed as Irish villagers), a village dance, and a
Lord's Prayer, all in minimalist style. The ensemble consisted of flute, harp, and viola, while I played the recorder and synthesizer. The play was performed 5 times inside 1st Baptist Church, Edmonton, whose pulpit had been entirely rebuilt to resemble a gray rock rising from the sea. Gloria's eloquent script was dulled by the poor acoustics of the building, and sadly much was lost. The generally negative review in the Edmonton Journal reflects this, but it singles out the music as the best part -- I like that.

     The original full score only exists in hand-copied manuscript somewhere, but I liked the Lord's Prayer section so much that I re-did it for SATB with organ and piano. For an interesting read try clicking on the "Lord's Prayer" link above to learn about the music's convoluted evolution from a love song to this setting ...


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