Gloria for Choir, Organ, Brass, & Percussion

Gloria Choir Brass Percussion Michael John Trotta

A new work for choir, brass, organ, and percussion, Michael John Trotta’s Gloria delivers a tapestry of melodic richness. A strong sense of architecture guides the listener through the three contrasting movements, full of triumphant drama. Trotta’s work is a rare example of music that is both grounded in tradition and appealing to the modern listener.

Preview Score and recording

Key Features:

  • Publishing Date: Jan ’19
  • Language: Latin
  • 3 Movements
  • Forces:
    • SATB, keyboard
    • SATB, Brass Quartet, Organ, and Percussion (timp. and 2 players)
    • SATB, Full Orchestra 2.2.2.2-1.2.1.1 timp. 2 perc +strings
  • Length: Approx. 14 Minutes

Program Notes:

Commissioned by a consortium of 10 choirs for simultaneous nationwide premieres during the 2018-2019 season, Michael John Trotta’s Gloria is a 14-minute work for choir, brass, organ, and percussion.This three movement setting uses a tapestry of sonorous harmonies that are triumphant, reflective and energetic to encompass both the history and the relevance of one of the oldest texts in the Christian tradition.

The text dates back to the fourth century with notable settings by Vivaldi, Bach, Poulenc, Walton, and more recently by John Rutter.  And despite its history, the text is still sung daily in Christian Liturgies around the world.

Gloria in excelsis opens with a brief brass fanfare that sets the stage for the triumphant theme. The  contrasting middle section on the text “et in terra pax” (and on earth peace) foreshadows the sweetness of the second movement before returning to the original theme, with rhythmically intensified brass and percussion underscoring.

Domine Deus provides repose and refreshment from the intensity of the outer movements.  A legato contrapuntal theme is introduced, recalling of the “et in terra pax” theme from the first movement.  The second theme  is delivered by a graceful soloist on the text “qui tollis,” (who takes away)  to which the choir plaintively responds, “miserere nobis” (have mercy on us).  The final statement of the theme soars with a grace that sets the stage for the ending,  which gently recedes as the  listener is left with a sense of peace and well-being.

Quoniam Tu Solus is introduced with brass fanfare atop a virtuosic organ accompaniment, providing an energetic introduction for the choir who sings the brass motive on the text “quoniam tu solus sanctus” (For You alone are holy). Following this brief opening, a modal double fugue, based on the theme from the first movement, is introduced on the text, “cum sancto” (with the spirit). Each choral exposition each builds in intensity, briefly punctuated by developments in the brass. The work ends in a rhythmic and joyous declamation of the first theme, this time with choir, brass, organ, and percussion all culminating in a thrilling conclusion.

Traditional Latin

Gloria in excelsis Deo
et in terra pax hominibus bonae voluntatis.
Laudamus te, benedicimus te,
adoramus te, glorificamus te,
gratias agimus tibi propter magnam gloriam tuam,

Domine Deus, Rex caelestis,
Deus Pater omnípotens.
Domine Fili unigenite, Jesu Christe,
Domine Deus, Agnus Dei, Filius Patris,
qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis;
qui tollis peccata mundi, suscipe deprecationem nostram.
Qui sedes ad dexteram Patris, miserere nobis.

Quoniam tu solus Sanctus, tu solus Dominus, tu solus Altissimus,
Jesu Christe, cum Sancto Spiritu: in gloria Dei Patris. Amen

Book of Common Prayer (1662)

Glory be to God on high
And in earth peace, goodwill towards men,
We praise thee, we bless thee,
we worship thee, we glorify thee,
we give thanks to thee, for thy great glory

O Lord God, heavenly King,
God the Father Almighty.
O Lord, the only-begotten Son, Jesu Christ;
O Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,
that takest away the sins of the world,
have mercy upon us.

For thou only art holy; thou only art the Lord;
thou only, O Christ, with the Holy Ghost,
art most high
in the glory of God the Father.

Amen.

Thanks to the following consortium choirs for making this work possible:

Texas A&M University-Commerce Chorale – Commerce, TX
Randall Hooper, Director of Choirs and Vocal Activities

Northwestern State University Chamber Choir – Natchitoches, LA
Dr. Nicholaus B. Cummins, Director of Choral Activities

Sing Omaha Master Chorale – Papillion, NE
Matt Hill, Artistic Director

University Christian Church Chancel Choir – Fort Worth, TX
Rev. Dr. Todd Prickett, Minister of Music

St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church Choir – Seattle, WA
Michael Monnikendam, Director of Music Ministries

Larchmont United Methodist Church & The Virginia Symphony – Norfolk, VA
Michael Regan, Director of Music

Chancel Choir of First Presbyterian Church – Rome, GA
Dr. Aaron Rice – Director of Classic Music Ministry

The Chancel Choir of Davidson United Methodist Church – Davidson, NC
Rev. Kevin Turner, Minister of Music and Worship

Sanctuary Choir of First Baptist Church – San Antonio, TX
Dr. Aaron C. Hufty, Associate Pastor of Worship and Music

Park Vista Chorus – Lake Worth, FL
Bryan Anthony Ijames, Director of Choral Activities

Here’s what people are saying about composer Michael John Trotta:

 

“tender harmonies and a palette of glowing vocal and instrumental colors” – Gramophone

“fascinating, infectious … effectively carries out the dialogue between the ancient . . . and the modern listener”- Choral Journal


“informs the thoughts and aspirations of the people and the time” – Choral Scholar


“weaves rich harmonies and memorable melodic lines into delightful tapestries of sound”– Stage and Cinema

“elegant, singable music with a strong spiritual heft” – Choir and Organ