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Duration: 18 minutes

PRECEPTS (2007)
Two Motets and an Anthem for Mixed Chorus, Oboe, Chamber Organ and Strings
Commissioned by the Cantata Singers, David Hoose, Music Director, and Winsor Music, Peggy Pearson, Oboe, Boston, Massachusetts, 2007

I. Quid enim prodest homini?
Motet for 3-part Women's or Treble Voices, Oboe, and Strings

Quid enim prodest homini si mundum universum lucretur
animae vero suae detrimentum patiatur?
(Biblia vulgata: Matthaeus 16:26)

What does it profit a man if he gain the whole world at the cost of his soul?
(Matthew 16:26)

II. Non negabis mercedem indigentis
Motet for 6-part Mixed Chorus, Oboe d'amore, and Strings

Non negabis mercedem indigentis et pauperis fratris tui,
Sive advenae, qui tecum moratur in terra, et intra portas tuas est:
Sed eadem die reddes ei pretium laboris sui ante solis occasum,
Quia pauper est, et ex eo sustentat animam suam.
(Biblia vulgata: Deuteronomium 24:14-15)

Do not keep back the wages of the poor and needy, whether your fellow
countryman or an alien living in your lands and settlements:
Rather pay him his wages at the end of the day before sunset,
because he is poor, and his living depends on them.
(Deuteronomy 24:14-15)

III. Wisdom cries aloud in the open air
Anthem for 5-part Mixed Chorus, Oboe, Chamber Organ, and Strings

Wisdom cries aloud in the open air,
She raises her voice in public places;
She calls at the top of the busy street
and proclaims at the open gates of the city:
Simple fools, how long will you be content with your simplicity?
If only you would respond to my reproof,
I would give you counsel
And teach you my precepts.
But because you refused to listen when I called,
Because no one attended when I stretched out my hand,
Because you spurned my advice
And ignored my reproof,
I will laugh at your doom
And deride you when terror comes,
When terror comes upon you like a hurricane
And your doom descends like a whirlwind.

Insolent men delight in their insolence;
Stupid men hate knowledge. (Proverbs 1:20-27)
An ignorant ruler brings harm to his people: (Proverbs 28:16)
To trample underfoot prisoners in the land,
To deprive a man of his rights,
To pervert justice in the courts,
This the Lord does not approve. (Lamentations 3:34-36)

For the simpleton turns a deaf ear and comes to grief,
And the stupid are ruined by their own complacency.
But whoever listens to me shall live
without fear of evil and in peace. (Proverbs 1:29-33)

(The above text is drawn principally from the New English Bible, with emendations made from alternative readings in several other modern English versions as well as from comparisons with the original Hebrew.)


 

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