Saturday, October 27, 2012

Eternal Father, Strong to Save

Claude T. Smith was one of Bill Toland’s favorite composers. Smith’s Eternal Father, Strong to Save is a masterful work, rich in harmony, dynamics, and thematic interplay. The piece is based on the missionary hymn of the same name composed in 1860 by William Whiting, which was adopted as the official hymn of the U.S. Navy. This work opens with a brilliant fanfare. The melody of the hymn then appears in a fugue developed by the woodwinds. The brass echo the fugue until the melody once again appears played by the choir of French horns. The ensemble joins in for a finale reminiscent of the introductory fanfare. (Music Program Notes)

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