Eventide Fall


Eventide Fall

Das Eintreten der Dämmerung

Koraal, Lied
Partituur + Directie + Stemmen
Jaar van Publicatie:


The composition EVENTIDE FALL is based upon the hymn “Abide With Me”, consisting of the text by Scottish poet Henry Francis Lyte, written in 1847, which is typically sung to the melody “Eventide” by English composer William Henry Monk. The hymn expresses the plea to God that he might save people from the approaching nightfall and not leave them alone in the dark. One can also imagine approaching death losing its horror thanks to God’s stewardship. Henry Francis Lyte set his poem to music to find consolation when he was on his deathbed, suffering from tuberculosis.

Alfred Bösendorfer drew inspiration from this comforting hymn to write his composition EVENTIDE FALL. He imagined the atmosphere of a church in the evening and set this association to music: It is still dark, a few candles are burning and a few parishioners have already taken a seat at the pews. The organist sits down at his instrument. The church increasingly fills and more candles are lit. Now the organist begins with a prelude – he holds the first note for a moment to consider what to improvise. Then he plays a soft first motif and pauses again before repeating the motif a note higher. Doing this, he is already thinking about the following chorale, so he adapts the music accordingly. Now the chorale begins, presented with great reverence. The faithful pray for support in difficult times (“When evening falls”). Baritones and euphoniums repeat the melody with a warm timbre. The music is full of devotion and one almost senses the presence of the Lord. Towards the end, the chorale is presented a third time. Now one can feel the joy in the hearts of the worshippers. Noble brass play with a full and rich sound, while higher woodwinds add jubilation in those hearts, filled with calm contentment.

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