Preces and Responses
Elizabeth Kimble

Composer Elizabeth Kimble
Text Book of Common Prayer, 1662
Voicing SATB [divisi], a cappella
Topics Evensong
Price $2.65 (U.S.)
Released 1/2020
Catalog no. 410-932
Difficulty Mod. diff.

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This stunning set of Evensong responses by Elizabeth Kimble features expressive, lyrical vocal lines and unexpected, striking harmonic shifts. Great expressive effect is found throughout with varied chord voicings and extended harmonies. The Lord's Prayer makes a particularly strong impression: allowing the congregation to monotone the prayer while the choir moves around them in rich harmony.

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"San Francisco-based singer and composer Elizabeth Kimble wrote these responses for St. Paul's Church, Burlingame, where she is a soprano section leader. The officiant's intonations follow the standard pattern, and the choral responses are anything but standard. Kimble's imagination runs free, and she achieves a remarkable variety of musical effects within a small, proscribed space. Complex harmonies and surprising tonal shifts challenge singers, yet the musical effect is natural and secure. All voice parts divide, with several phrases in sustained eight-part harmony. In addition, Kimble uses the divided choir to build extremely expansive verticalities. The setting of the Lord's Prayer is of particular interest, with the congregation monotoning the words with the choir floating above and below the pitch in pungent fauxbourdon ending with eight voices for the doxological ending of the prayer. A footnote provides for a cut directly to the 'Amen' when following 1662 Book of Common Prayer liturgy. The responses that follow are more harmonically conventional while still providing plenty of spice. Even in a fully diatonic environment, the rich voicing of individual chords, many with unusual added notes, maintain the harmonic lushness of the preces. This set of responses will be a welcome addition to the evensong repertoire of advanced choirs." -AAM Journal, March 2020


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