Music to End Easter Day 4 April 2021
Hello, everyone, and Happy Easter!
The Lord is risen!
He is risen indeed!
We begin this sequence with Bach’s great choral prelude ‘Christ lag in Todesbanden’
based on one of the finest resurrection hymns of the Lutheran Church.
The chorale melody is underpinned with a driving contrapuntal motif, passed between alto, tenor and pedal.
In death’s strong grasp the Saviour lay,
for our offences given;
but now the Lord is risen today,
and brings us life from heaven!
Wherefore let us all rejoice,
and praise our God with cheerful voice,
and sing loud Hallelujahs!
Translation by Catherine Winkworth
Chorale prelude for Easter Day: Christ lag in todesbanden
‘I know that my Redeemer liveth’, from part 3 of ‘Messiah’ is one of Handel’s most beautiful arias.
Following immediately after the ebullient celebration of the Hallelujah chorus, it offers a more personal, prayerful response –
though no less joyful – to the news of Christ’s resurrection from the dead.
The words are based on the Messianic anticipation in the Book of Job (Job 19: 25–26).
It is sung here by Elizabeth Weisberg, with the Cornerstone Chamber Orchestra.
I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that He shall stand
at the latter day upon the earth.
And though worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God.
For now is Christ risen from the dead, the first fruits of them that sleep.
I know that my redeemer liveth [Messiah]
We conclude the sequence with my instrumental arrangement
of the Easter Hymn from Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana.
It is Easter morning in a nineteenth-century Italian village.
From the church we hear a hymn being sung by the choir,
then the whole congregation tumbles out on to the streets
and enters into a joyful chorus of praise.
Let us all go about our daily work and leisure in cheerful song
as we share the joy of the Easter message!
Allelujah! O rejoice that the Lord has arisen.
He has conquered the power of the grave.
He has broken the gates of the prison, he has risen in glory to save.
Recessional: Easter Hymn [Mascagni]
Happy Easter, everyone.