Kohelet: A Cantata

in Five Movements



2019


41'

Music by Henry Dehlinger
Hebrew text adapted from Ecclesiastes and Song of Songs

for SATB Chorus, Bass-Baritone and Soprano Solos,
2 Trumpets in C, 2 Horns in F, Bass Trombone,
Timpani, Percussion, Harp and Organ

MP3 Audio  

 


Kohelet: A Cantata in Five Movements
I. Hakol Havel (All is Vanity) (mp3)

 

MP3 Audio

 

Kohelet: A Cantata in Five Movements
II. La'kol Zman (For Everything a Season) (mp3)

 

MP3 Audio


 

Kohelet: A Cantata in Five Movements
III. Shir Hashirim (Song of Songs) (mp3)

 

MP3 Audio

 

Kohelet: A Cantata in Five Movements
IV. Divrei Chachamim (The Wisdom of the Sages) (mp3)

 

MP3 Audio

 

Kohelet: A Cantata in Five Movements
V. Sof Davar (The Last Word) (mp3)

 

Commission

Co-commissioned by the Washington Master Chorale and the Santa Clara Chorale.

Washington Master ChoraleMaestro Thomas Colohan and the Washington Master Chorale

Premiere

WORLD PREMIERE
May 8, 2020, Mission Santa Clara de Asís, Santa Clara, CA.
Santa Clara Chorale and SCU Concert Choirs
Thomas Colohan, conducting

Notes

Co-commissioned by the Washington Master Chorale and the Santa Clara Chorale for their 2019-20 seasons, Kohelet is a cantata in five movements by Henry Dehlinger for SATB chorus, bass-baritone and soprano solos, and instrumental forces that feature brass, timpani, percussion, harp and organ. Sung in Biblical Hebrew, it combines lush, modal melodies, energetic meters and colorful harmonic textures, and offers an ecumenical blend of Hebrew antiphonal singing and Christian choral tradition.

The Hebrew text was adapted from the Book of Ecclesiastes and transliterated by the composer’s wife, Lauren Kravetz Dehlinger. Ecclesiastes is one of twenty-four books of the Tanakh, or Hebrew Bible, and is also among the canonical Wisdom Books in the Old Testament of most Christian denominations. The title, Ecclesiastes, is the Greek translation of the Hebrew word, Kohelet, which means “one who gathers others together” or “teacher.” The bass-baritone soloist sings the part of King Solomon—the author of Ecclesiastes according to Jewish tradition—while the soprano soloist sings the part of his expectant bride in the third movement love duet adapted from the Song of Songs.

Kohelet is an examination of the age-old question about the meaning of life. Its wise sayings are embedded in the popular consciousness: “Vanity of vanities, all is vanity,” “There is nothing new under the sun,” “For everything there is a season,” and “The race is not to the swift.” The author concludes it is far more important to live wisely and enjoy the simple pleasures of life within a morally-grounded framework than to wantonly pursue wealth, fame or power, or “chasing after the wind.” He admonishes us to look at joy as a state of inner being so that we remain steady in the face of life’s challenges. As the American poet Ella Wheeler Wilcox said, “Tis the set of the sails and not the gales that tells the way we go…Tis the set of the soul that determines the goal, and not the calm or the strife.”

Conceived in the spirit of Leonard Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms, Kohelet expresses a modern, yet tonal, American aesthetic that synthesizes classical and vernacular elements. Its strong, unique themes and leitmotifs are rendered from a diverse musical palette to reflect the text and emotions it elicits. These rich musical fragments come together into a meaningful—and often dramatic—aural experience.

Categories

Choral, Orchestral, Chamber

Publisher

Henry Dehlinger Music Publishing

2019-2020 Premieres

  • Oct 27
    Washington Master Chorale: Three Choral Songs on James Joyce (World Premiere),  Washington
     
  • Apr 18
    National Philharmonic at Strathmore: The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock (World Premiere),  North Bethesda
     
  • May 8
    Santa Clara Chorale: Kohelet - A Cantata in Five Movements (World Premiere),  Santa Clara
     

Get Email Updates

Join Our Mailing List

Premiering in 2020

The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock 

The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock: A Rhapsody for
Voice and Orchestra


Music by Henry Dehlinger
Words by T.S. Eliot

A sweeping 21st century rhapsody for voice and orchestra, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock was composed especially for Metropolitan Opera soprano Danielle Talamantes. Adapted from the famous poem by T. S. Eliot, it uses the melodic and rhythmic contours of Eliot's stream-of-consciousness narrative to dictate mood and melodic character.

World Premiere: April 18, 2020
The National Philharmonic at Strathmore
Piotr Gajewski, Music Director & Conductor

Instrumentation
Soparno Solo and Orchestra

 

Listen to MP3

The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
(MP3)


More info

Premiering in 2020

KOHELET: A Cantata in Five Movements 

Kohelet: A Cantata in Five Movements

Music by Henry Dehlinger

Inspired by Leonard Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms and co-commissioned by the Washington Master Chorale and the Santa Clara Chorale, Henry's Kohelet gives you lush, modal melodies, energetic meters, and colorful harmonic textures with Hebrew text drawn from the Book of Ecclesiastes and Song of Songs.

World Premiere: May 8, 2020
Santa Clara Chorale and Santa Clara University Choirs, Scot Hanna-Weir, Artistic Director
Thomas Colohan, Conducting

Instrumentation
SATB, Bass-Baritone Solo, Soprano Solo, Brass, Organ, Harp and Percussion.

 

Listen to MP3

I. Hakol Havel (All is Vanity)
(MP3)


More info

Electronic Press Kit

EPK