• Yehudi Wyner
  • Psalms and Early Songs (1973)

  • Associated Music Publishers Inc (World)
  • pf
  • voice
  • 10 min

Programme Note

  • Psalm 119 (2 min 45 s)
  • Psalm 66 (2 min)
  • When you are old (2 min 45 s)
  • Exeunt (1 min 45 s)

Composer note:

Psalm 119 (daleth) and Psalm 66, both for low voice and piano, were written in 1950. The two were conceived as a set, sharing harmonic material and conveying opposing aspects of prayer. Psalm 119 project contrition and supplication; Psalm 66 is a shout of jubilation and triumph.

The first singer of these Psalms was the young alto Rosalyn Elias, then still a student. Her eloquent performance remains a vivid memory to this day. Psalm 66, “Halleluyah,” was later taken up by other notable singers such as William Warfield who performed it around the world, and by the tenor George Shirley for whom a high transposition was arranged. Psalm 66 was my first published composition.

— Yehudi Wyner