Who is this Jesus?
Cast and SATB (or SAB) choir.
This piece was fun to write. It was originally part a youth production, and the title question “Who is this Jesus?” was answered by the music and narration that followed it. The answer is also strongly suggested by the final major chord (and the change from question mark to exclamation mark). The piece is in rondo form - A B A C A B' A - where A asks the questions, B states the case in favour, and C states the case against. Near the end of the original production, the second B section returned as a reprise.
The score calls for a cast, an SATB choir, and two pianists (though only one piano, luckily). The nature of the cast will depend on whether or not the show is staged. In an unstaged choral performance, various portions could be assigned to sections, small groups, or soloists. In a staged or semi-staged performance, the cast members portray folk from Jesus’ time and the questions of the day.The SATB choir needs to be large enough to stagger breathing in all four parts, even in the last few measures where the sopranos and basses divide. The pianists should have a jolly good time with this one. They both get a turn to use the pedal, and the lower player gets to hit the lowest A on the piano three separate times.
The 7/8 passages are best conducted as three unequal beats valued at 3+2+2 eighth notes. When the time signature changes, it is the eighth notes that remain constant.
Hear the music:
- MP3 Original live performance, 16–17 March 2013
You can also download this piece as a Lilypond file.