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James Newton: Sacred Works

Audio Samples

>Newton, James : Mass, for vocal soloists & ensemble
>Newton, James : Between the Cherubim, for piano
>Newton, James : In a Moment, in the Twinkling of an Eye, for voice, clarinet, bassoon & piano

Album Summary

>Newton, James : Mass, for vocal soloists & ensemble
>Newton, James : Between the Cherubim, for piano
>Newton, James : In a Moment, in the Twinkling of an Eye, for voice, clarinet, bassoon & piano
Performers Conductor Ensemble
  • >
Composer

Notes & Reviews:

This is the first recording devoted to James Newton’s (b. 1953) sacred works. Among his influences, Newton cites Bach and Stravinsky’s masses and cantatas, as well as the operas of Messiaen, Puccini and Verdi as touchstones. While Newton does not appropriate materials from European composers, he does occasionally utilize their methods, his use of Bachderived counterpoint in the "Kyrie" being a salient example in his Mass. Inspired by Bach, who incorporated English, French and Italian dances into his sacred music, and Thomas A. Dorsey, who shaped gospel music out of the blues, In a Moment, in the Twinkling of an Eye, is a stand-alone example of Newton’s transformations of secular materials through the use of sacred texts, in this case a passage from 1st Corinthians. Newton’s writing for voice in the initial passages of the song resembles that of his Mass, his emphasis on diction and dynamics echoing the African American tradition of concert singing, a historically busy intersection between sacred and secular forms of music.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Zipper Hall, the Colburn School of Music.



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Works Details

>Newton, James : Mass, for vocal soloists & ensemble
  • Performers: Lynn Vartan (Percussion); Gary Bovyer (Clarinet); Tracy Van Fleet (Cello); Abdiel Gonzalez (Bass Baritone); Daniel Chaney (Tenor); Vicki Ray (Piano); Cecilia Tsan (Cello); Kazi Pitelka (Viola); Elissa Johnston (Soprano); Ralph Morrison (Violin); Gary Woodward (Flute)
  • Conductor: Grant Gershon
  • Notes: Zipper Hall, the Colburn School of Music (08/22/2009-08/23/2009)
  • Running Time: 38 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 2006-2007

>Newton, James : Between the Cherubim, for piano
  • Performer: Gloria Cheng (Piano)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 53 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2007

>Newton, James : In a Moment, in the Twinkling of an Eye, for voice, clarinet, bassoon & piano
  • Performers: Elissa Johnston (Soprano); Julie Feves (Bassoon); Gary Bovyer (Clarinet); Mark Menzies (Piano)
  • Running Time: 19 min. 20 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2004