Opus 554

Exsultet (2004)

for Piano and Stereo Tape

Anthony Cheung, piano

Duration: 5 min.

Dedication: for Anthony

Publisher: Musik Fabrik

Performance materials available from the publisher.

Exsultet (2004) for piano and tape was written for and is dedicated to composer and pianist Anthony Cheung.

The title of the work refers to the sung proclamation at the opening of the Great Vigil of Easter, celebrated in Roman Catholic and Anglican/Episcopal churches throughout the world on Holy Saturday (the night before Easter Sunday). In total darkness, the Paschal Candle (the “light of Christ”) is lit and during a procession, the Exsultet is chanted by the deacon or priest.

In this work, the piano acts as a cantor that brings forth a response from the tape. They are two separate worlds which become connected.

The singing of traditional chant for “the light of Christ, thanks be to God” is heard quietly in the work. The tape part brings together both wind and bells in response to the piano’s invocations. Finally, choruses of birds and animals sing out and respond as all creation comes alive to celebrate Christ’s Resurrection.