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Works

De profundis

1980

Scored for

male choir (TTBB), percussion ad lib. and organ

Duration

7 min

Short description

De profundis for male choir, percussions ad libitum and organ was completed in Vienna in 1980 after Pärt had left the Soviet Union. The composition is dedicated to the Austrian composer Gottfried von Einem (1918–1996) and was premiered by Vocalensemble Kassel, conducted by Klaus Martin Ziegler. In 2008, the composer arranged the piece for male choir and chamber orchestra.

The basis of the composition is a pilgrimage song, Psalm 130 (129) Out of the depths, I cry to you, Lord, which has been composed following the beginning of the psalm: one voice sings the first two verses of the psalm, two voices sing the third and fourth, three voices sing the fifth and sixth, whereas the seventh and eighth psalms are sung by the entire four-part male choir. With t…

De profundis for male choir, percussions ad libitum and organ was completed in Vienna in 1980 after Pärt had left the Soviet Union. The composition is dedicated to the Austrian composer Gottfried von Einem (1918–1996) and was premiered by Vocalensemble Kassel, conducted by Klaus Martin Ziegler. In 2008, the composer arranged the piece for male choir and chamber orchestra.

The basis of the composition is a pilgrimage song, Psalm 130 (129) Out of the depths, I cry to you, Lord, which has been composed following the beginning of the psalm: one voice sings the first two verses of the psalm, two voices sing the third and fourth, three voices sing the fifth and sixth, whereas the seventh and eighth psalms are sung by the entire four-part male choir. With this gradual addition of voices, what started as an individual lament ultimately becomes a collective wailing. 

The Hilliard Ensemble, Christopher Bowers-Broadbent (organ), Albert Bowen (percussion). CD Arbos. ECM New Series 1325

© ECM Records

World premiere

25.04.1981
St Martin's Church, Kassel, Hessen, Germany

Concert: Chorkonzert II

Kassel Vocal Ensemble , Siegfried Fink (percussion), Werner Jacob (organ), Klaus Martin Ziegler (conductor), Male voices of the church choir at St. Martin

Completion year

1980

Dedication

to Gottfried von Einem

Scored for

male choir (TTBB), percussion ad lib. and organ

Duration

7 min

Publishers

Universal Edition

Language

Latin

Vocal text

Psalm 130 (129)

De profundis clamavi ad te Domine:
Domine exaudi vocem meam: Fiant aures tuae intendentes, in vocem deprecationis meae.
Si iniquitates observaveris Domine: Domine quis sustinebit?
Quia apud te propitiatio est: et propter legem tuam sustinui te Domine. Sustinuit anima mea in verbo eius:
speravit anima mea in Domino.
A custodia matutina usque ad noctem: speret Israel in Domino.
Quia apud Dominum misericordia: et copiosa apud eum redemptio.
Et ipse redimet Israel, ex omnibus iniquitatibus eius.

Psalm 130 (129)

Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O Lord.
Lord, hear my voice: let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications.
If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?
But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.
I wait for the Lord, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.
My soul wai…
Psalm 130 (129)

De profundis clamavi ad te Domine:
Domine exaudi vocem meam: Fiant aures tuae intendentes, in vocem deprecationis meae.
Si iniquitates observaveris Domine: Domine quis sustinebit?
Quia apud te propitiatio est: et propter legem tuam sustinui te Domine. Sustinuit anima mea in verbo eius:
speravit anima mea in Domino.
A custodia matutina usque ad noctem: speret Israel in Domino.
Quia apud Dominum misericordia: et copiosa apud eum redemptio.
Et ipse redimet Israel, ex omnibus iniquitatibus eius.

Psalm 130 (129)

Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O Lord.
Lord, hear my voice: let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications.
If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?
But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.
I wait for the Lord, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.
My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning.
Let Israel hope in the Lord: for with the Lord there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption.
And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.

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