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  • Duration 5 min
  • Year 1992
  • Instrumentation Concert Band and Chorus
  • Commissioned by Meet The Composer
  • Text by Walt Whitman
  • Publisher Neil A. Kjos Company
    Piano Vocal Score also available



Program Notes

I composed Invocation in 1993 as part of a grant from the Wayne Township Public Schools and Meet The Composer's Education Program. I wanted to compose a work that would have some power and drive. Something not to difficult to learn, but could easily open or close a concert program, leaving an air of excitement. I thought this text by Walt Whitman had the richness and power of what I was looking for. There is a sense of Americana here, but not the standard cliches one might expect.

The harmonic style is tonal in nature and most of the chords are built in thirds. The opening measures feature the percussion section. Military cadences with staccato percussion build to a most powerful climax. Then the Woodwinds enter with a simple hymn like statement. At the Allegro Moderato (bar 39) there is a fanfare motive which bring us to the opening vocal statement. There is a feeling of military vigor here as the chorus urges us of what is to come. The form is basically ABA from this point on. The B section starts at measure 74 (Piu mosso).The chorus sings a more melodic line here doubled with the clarinets. The tempo is a bit faster with an increase in excitement which builds and eventually returns to the A section (measure 112). Although the material here starts out as in the previous A section it soon changes. The section builds ever further this time culminating at measure 158. There is a swift rush to the end punctuated with brass and percussion flourishes. There are three stately chords, and then a last crescendo into the final bar.