Magazine article The American Organist

David Hurd, O the Depth of Love Divine: Choral Music for the Church Year

Magazine article The American Organist

David Hurd, O the Depth of Love Divine: Choral Music for the Church Year

Article excerpt

SCORES DAVID HURD, O THE DEPTH OF LOVE DIVINE: CHORAL MUSIC FOR THE CHURCH YEAR. 2018, Trinitas imprint, Oregon Catholic Press. Octavo packet, #30138890. Dates and individual catalog numbers vary. $28.50. Ocp.org. This is a collection of 14 separate choral octavos, assembled in a book-like color cover. The music spans four decades of David Hurd's fruitful career, with most of the titles dating to the 1990s and 2000s but also reaching back into the 1970s. Most of the anthems, regardless of when they were written, are newly published; kudos to Oregon Catholic Press and Trinitas for taking on such a good project. These octavos not only afford a choir director an abundance of beautiful music in a wide variety of styles and levels of difficulty, but they also allow us a synoptic view of Hurd's career as a composer of sacred music.

Hurd's style-essentially Anglican, with notes of jazz, modern classical music, eastern and western chant, and African American song-sets the standard for choral music in the Episcopal Church and those who appreciate its long tradition. There are other composers of that school, of course, but it is David Hurd who has endured, steadily composing, continually expanding his range and voice. Looking at the dedications of these pieces, one sees all of the grand church occasions for which they were commissioned: ordinations, installations, anniversaries, tributes. …

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