On April 9th, at seven o’clock in the evening, the Sanctuary Choir and Chamber Orchestra will present “The Seven Last Words of Christ” by Théodore Dubois. The work will feature soloists John Blizzard, Mike Trammell and Taylor Rogers. The seven words (or phrases) are taken from the combined accounts of the four Gospels and draw the listener in to the final moments that Jesus experienced on the cross.
“The Seven Last Words of Christ” is presented in eight movements. Composing for the Catholic church, Dubois used traditional texts from the Roman Catholic Holy Week liturgies to add meditations on the scriptural account. The opening soprano solo is the O Vos Omnes, traditionally sung at Tenebrae services. The remaining movements capture the anguish of our Savior as He was crucified.
“Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”
“Verily, thou shalt be in Paradise today with me. Amen, so I tell thee.”
“See, O woman! Here behold thy Son beloved.”
“God, my Father, why hast Thou forsaken me?”
“I am a-thirst!”
“Father, into Thy hands I commend my soul.”
“It is finished!”
At the end of the Seventh Word, Dubois concludes his sacred cantata with a hymn-like setting of the medieval antiphon Adoramus Te, Christe (Christ, we do all adore Thee). This serene hymn, much like a chorale at the end of an 18th century cantata, provides the listener with a foretaste of the resurrection after the compelling drama of the Passion story.
(Program notes by Yvonne Grover.)
Please join us for this evening of music and worship.
The work will be presented in English and promises to be a great gift to our community. Be sure to invite friends, family and neighbors.