Imagine the reaction on the day when people hear the first performance of the piece of music you commissioned. See how Bruce McInnes, then Choirmaster of Grace Church in New York described the reception of his Church's music commission:
"Splendid, splendid, splendid!!! It really went very well indeed, and the Rector found it 'tremendously moving, powerful, and well-crafted.' He asked that we do it again for Christ the King Sunday (Nov.22), which is our Stewardship Sunday also, and the Sunday before American Thanksgiving!
"The Presiding Bishop was most enthusiastic as both music and text reflected his sermon on Christian Unity and the Brotherhood of Man. He asked for a copy of the score, which I gave him. He also mentioned the music in his remarks at the dinner - where several other distinguished visitors (R.C., Episcopal, Lutheran, Bishops etc.) also commented." October 1998
Revd Mgr George Stack, The Administrator at Westminster Cathedral, London, wrote this about his music commission:
"I wanted to write to thank you so much for that marvellous Alleluia and verse (for Cardinal Basil Hume's Requiem). It was all that I wanted - and more. It was good to see so many strands of the Cardinal's life being brought together at that Mass. I am very grateful." July 1999
And Blanaid Murphy, Director of the Palestrina Choir at the Dublin Pro-Cathedral in Ireland had this to say about the piece she commissioned:
"I would love for you to write another work for us. I really feel that it is one of the great legacies of our centenary celebrations, that we have been able to commission and premier such a beautiful and meaningful work as your Nunc dimittis." Blanaid Murphy, Director of the Palestrina Choir, Dublin. November 2003
What's the Bottom Line?"That's alright for them," you may be thinking, "but how can we afford a music commission?" This is where the surprises come in. It's a lot less than you may think, and you get a lot more than you probably expect!
And don't let a genuine lack of funds prevent you from considering this - composers are usually open to discussion.
Not only do you get a music commission tailored precisely for your musical forces, your level of difficulty, your building, and your time constraints, but you also get a lot of personal advice and guidance over the performance.
Let's elaborate. Perhaps you have a very strong soprano line at the moment, or an outstanding baritone soloist. You can have parts written especially to show them off. Have you brass or percussion available? Maybe a particularly beautiful stop on your organ? Have you thought of the possibilities of teaming up with your local brass group, or a recorder consort from your local school?
Perhaps your church or cathedral building lends itself to antiphonal effects, or processional music down a long nave?
Or how about a piece of Christmas music that can combine all your local resources for a splendid end-of-year celebration?
Because of your familiarity with your church and your choir, you are in an ideal position to influence the composition of a piece of music which will live long after you, yet always be associated with you. You get to choose the text, the forces, the length of the music commission ...
What you get ...Here at Music-for-Church-Choirs.com we have one of the world's leading choral composers, Colin Mawby. Colin has composed hundreds of pieces which are performed all over the world, and many of them started life as a music commission. We will be able to offer the services of more great composers as we develop. Click here to take a look at Colin Mawby's info.
Once you have approached your chosen composer with your request for a music commission, this is what will happen:
First of all the composer will discuss with you exactly what you want, and what your budget is - both for him and for the players and singers. Colin Mawby usually works on the basis of detailed questions, to make sure that nothing gets missed out.
If you haven't a text, Colin will make suggestions from his vast knowledge of texts suitable for religious or secular music. You'll stay in constant touch throughout the process, and you will receive a handwritten manuscript copy of the finished music commission. You are, of course, free to make copies of this for your own use.
But it doesn't end there! Many people greatly appreciate the follow-up and advice which Colin continues to give while the music commission is in rehearsal. Indeed, if time and place permit, he will happily collaborate with you at a workshop or rehearsal.
Whenever possible, Colin Mawby likes to attend the first performance ... if you wish, he'll even conduct your commission for you!
After your first performance, you'll probably want to keep in touch regularly with your composer. And of course if you opt for another music commission you will be in a privileged position.
Hymns, Arrangements,The only limit, as they say, is your imagination. You can make a spectacular impression with a majestic hymn arrangement - just think of the versions of All People that on Earth do dwell by Vaughan Williams, and Benjamin Britten.