The Players ask for a Blessing

  • for choir SSA unaccompanied

  • Duration 3' 50"


by W B Yeats

commissioned by Concordia Youth Chorale 2009

this piece won the first International Choral Music Competition "Festa de la Música Coral" Barcelona (female-voice choirs category) in 2015


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Three voices together:

Hurry to bless the hands that play,
The mouths that speak, the notes and strings,
O masters of the glittering town!
O lay the shrilly trumpet down,
Though drunken with the flags that sway
Over the ramparts and the towers,
And with the waving of your wings.

First voice:

Maybe they linger by the way.
One gathers up his purple gown;
One leans and mutters by the wall -
He dreads the weight of mortal hours.

Second voice:

O no, O no! they hurry down
Like plovers that have heard the call.

Third voice:

O kinsmen of the Three in One,
O kinsmen bless the hands that play.
The notes they waken shall live on
When all this heavy history's done;
Our hands, our hands must ebb away.

Three voices together:

The proud and careless notes live on
But bless our hands that ebb away.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939)