You are here
Home > Arts > Picking the Best Choral Pieces, American Idol-Style

Picking the Best Choral Pieces, American Idol-Style

American Idol may be in its last season, but the audience voting method that it popularized to American audiences is alive and well…in choral music?

Yes, you read that correctly. YourClassical.org is conducting a poll of Internet audiences’ favorite pieces of choral music, with Minneapolis-based VocalEssence to perform the top 15 picks from the 100-piece list at its April 22 concert. Voting is free and online, and runs through 11:59 p.m. CST on Monday, Jan. 18, 2016.

The 100 prospective pieces are:

  1. Allegri, Gregorio, MISERERE
  2. Argento, Dominick, GLORIA (from “The Masque of Angels”)
  3. Bach, J. S., CRUCIFIXUS (from “B Minor Mass”)
  4. Bach, J. S., JESU, JOY OF MAN’S DESIRING (from Cantata 147)
  5. Bach, J. S., SINGET DEM HERRN
  6. Bach, J. S., OPENING CHORUS (from “St. Matthew Passion”)
  7. Bach, PDQ, MY BONNY LASS SHE SMELLETH
  8. Barber, Samuel, AGNUS DEI
  9. Barber, Samuel, SURE ON THIS SHINING NIGHT
  10. Barnett, Carol, GLORIA (from “Bluegrass Mass’)
  11. Berger, Jean, THE EYES OF ALL WAIT UPON THEE
  12. Berlioz, Hector, THE SHEPHERD’S FAREWELL (from “L’Enfance du Christ”)
  13. Bernstein, Leonard, MAKE OUR GARDEN GROW (from “Candide”)
  14. Biebl, Franz, AVE MARIA
  15. Billings, William, WHEN JESUS WEPT
  16. Brahms, Johannes, SCHAFFE IN MIR, GOTT, EIN REIN HERZ
  17. Brahms, Johannes, HOW LOVELY IS THY DWELLING PLACE (from “A German Requiem”)
  18. Britten, Benjamin, THIS LITTLE BABE (from “A Ceremony of Carols”)
  19. Britten, Benjamin, WOLCUM YULE (from “A Ceremony of Carols”)
  20. Bruckner, Anton, OS JUSTI
  21. Burleigh, Harry, T., MY LORD WHAT A MORNIN’
  22. Busto, Javier, AVE MARIA
  23. Chesnokov, Pavel, SALVATION IS CREATED
  24. Christiansen, F. Melius, BEAUTIFUL SAVIOR
  25. Christiansen, F. Melius, PRAISE TO THE LORD
  26. Clausen, René, ALL THAT HATH LIFE AND BREATH
  27. Clausen, René, SET ME AS A SEAL
  28. Copland, Aaron, AT THE RIVER
  29. Copland, Aaron, CHING-A-RING-CHAW
  30. Copland, Aaron, SIMPLE GIFTS
  31. Copland, Aaron, THE PROMISE OF LIVING (from “The Tender Land”)
  32. Dawson, William, EV’RY TIME I FEEL THE SPIRIT
  33. Dawson, William, SOON AH WILL BE DONE
  34. Dickau, David, IF MUSIC BE THE FOOD OF LOVE
  35. Duruflé, Maurice, SANCTUS (from “Requiem”)
  36. Duruflé, Maurice, UBI CARITAS
  37. Erb, James, SHENANDOAH
  38. Fauré, Gabriel, CANTIQUE DE JEAN RACINE
  39. Fauré, Gabriel, IN PARADISUM (from “Requiem”)
  40. Fauré, Gabriel, SANCTUS (from “Requiem”)
  41. Flummerfelt, Joseph, DANNY BOY
  42. Foster, Stephen, BEAUTIFUL DREAMER
  43. Gawthrop, Daniel, SING ME TO HEAVEN
  44. Hairston, Jester, AMEN
  45. Hampton, Keith, PRAISE HIS HOLY NAME
  46. Handel, G. F., FOR UNTO US A CHILD IS BORN (from “Messiah”)
  47. Handel, G. F., HALLELUJAH CHORUS (from “Messiah”)
  48. Handel, G. F., HALLELUJAH, AMEN (from “Judas Maccabaeus”)
  49. Handel, G. F., THINE IS THE GLORY/SEE THE CONQUERING HERO (from “Judas Maccabeus”)
  50. Haydn, Franz Joseph, THE HEAVENS ARE TELLING (from “The Creation”)
  51. Hogan, Moses, ELIJAH ROCK
  52. Hogan Moses, MY SOUL’S BEEN ANCHORED IN THE LORD
  53. Hogan, Moses, THIS LITTLE LIGHT OF MINE
  54. Holst, Gustav, AVE MARIA
  55. Larsen, Libby, BEAUTIFUL STAR
  56. Lauridsen, Morten, O MAGNUM MYSTERIUM
  57. Lauridsen, Morten, SURE ON THIS SHINING NIGHT
  58. Leontovych, Mykola, CAROL OF THE BELLS
  59. Luboff, Norman, DEEP RIVER
  60. Luboff, Norman, WADE IN THE WATER
  61. Manz, Paul, E’EN SO, LORD JESUS, COME QUICKLY
  62. Mendelssohn, Felix, HEAR MY PRAYER (OH, FOR THE WINGS OF A DOVE)
  63. Mendelssohn, Felix, HE WATCHING OVER ISRAEL (from “Elijah”)
  64. Mendelssohn, Felix, LIFT THINE EYES (from “Elijah”)
  65. Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus, AVE VERUM CORPUS
  66. Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus, LACRIMOSA (from “Requiem”)
  67. Orff, Carl, O FORTUNA (from “Carmina Burana”)
  68. Palestrina, Giovanni Pierluigi da, SICUT CERVUS
  69. Parker, Alice/Robert Shaw, AMAZING GRACE
  70. Parker, Alice/Robert Shaw, HARK, I HEAR THE HARPS ETERNAL
  71. Paulus, Stephen, PILGRIM’S HYMN
  72. Paulus, Stephen, THE ROAD HOME
  73. Poston, Elizabeth, JESUS CHRIST THE APPLE TREE
  74. Rachmaninoff, Sergei, BOGORODITSE DEVO
  75. Ray, Robert, HE NEVER FAILED ME YET
  76. Rutter, John, ALL THINGS BRIGHT AND BEAUTIFUL
  77. Rutter, John, FOR THE BEAUTY OF THE EARTH
  78. Rutter, John, WHAT SWEETER MUSIC
  79. Saint-Saëns, Camille, PRAISE YE THE LORD (TOLLITE HOSTIAS)
  80. Shaw, Martin, WITH A VOICE OF SINGING
  81. Stainer, John, GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD (from “The Crucifixion”)
  82. Stroope, Z. Randall, HOMELAND (based on Gustav Holst “The Planets – Jupiter”)
  83. Tallis, Thomas, IF YE LOVE ME
  84. Tavener, John, SONG FOR ATHENE
  85. Tavener, John, THE LAMB
  86. Thomas, André, KEEP YOUR LAMPS
  87. Thompson, Randall, ALLELUIA
  88. Thompson, Randall, CHOOSE SOMETHING LIKE A STAR
  89. Thompson, Randall, THE GOD WHO GAVE US LIFE (from “Testament of Freedom”)
  90. Thompson, Randall, THE LAST WORDS OF DAVID
  91. Ticheli, Frank, THERE WILL BE REST
  92. Vaughan Williams, Ralph, O TASTE AND SEE
  93. Victoria, Tomás Luis de, O MAGNUM MYSTERIUM
  94. Victoria, Tomás Luis de, O VOS OMNES
  95. Vivaldi, Antonio, DOMINE, FILI UNIGENITE
  96. Whalum, Wendell, BETELEHEMU
  97. Whitacre, Eric, LUX AURUMQUE
  98. Whitacre, Eric, SLEEP
  99. Whitacre, Eric, WATER NIGHT
  100. Wilburg, Mack, COME, THOU FOUNT OF EVERY BLESSING

When asked to comment, the Twin Cities Arts’ Reader‘s Basil Considine nominated 15 pieces from the list, adding, “The limited representation of women composers amongst the list is unfortunate – I hope they follow up with a list of 100 contemporary choral works that draws more on the last 60 years of women writing for choirs.” His list is:

  1. Bach, PDQ, MY BONNY LASS SHE SMELLETH
  2. Palestrina, Giovanni Pierluigi da, SICUT CERVUS
  3. Haydn, Franz Joseph, THE HEAVENS ARE TELLING (from “The Creation”)
  4. Mendelssohn, Felix, LIFT THINE EYES (from “Elijah”)
  5. Larsen, Libby, BEAUTIFUL STAR
  6. Lauridsen, Morten, O MAGNUM MYSTERIUM
  7. Biebl, Franz, AVE MARIA
  8. Duruflé, Maurice, UBI CARITAS
  9. Erb, James, SHENANDOAH
  10. Brahms, Johannes, HOW LOVELY IS THY DWELLING PLACE (from “A German Requiem”)
  11. Fauré, Gabriel, CANTIQUE DE JEAN RACINE
  12. Berlioz, Hector, THE SHEPHERD’S FAREWELL (from “L’Enfance du Christ”)
  13. Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus, LACRIMOSA (from “Requiem”)
  14. Allegri, Gregorio, MISERERE
  15. Copland, Aaron, THE PROMISE OF LIVING (from “The Tender Land”)
Twin Cities Arts Reader
The Twin Cities Arts Reader is an arts and lifestyles magazine whose coverage examines arts and selected activities in the state of Minnesota and across the country. It provides Minnesota's largest source of in-depth, critical theatre coverage, and reaches more than 275,000 readers per year.
Top