Premiering conductor Richard Hynson, writes:
As music Director of Bel Canto Chorus in Milwaukee, I am charged with programming new, exciting, audience-accessible repertoire for our annual Christmas in the Basilica concerts. Surprisingly, it is difficult to find new works that both challenge and engage the chorus while moving the audience. Gordon Thornett’s “Gloria” is one of those works. Scored for Soprano Soloist, Mixed Chorus, Brass (3 tpts, 3 tbns), Timpani, and Organ, this single-movement, ten-minute setting of the Gloria from the Ordinary of the Mass demonstrates the composer’s use of exciting, multi-metric rhythms, well-structured melodies, and emotional contrast.
While the choral writing offers some challenges, a good college or community chorus can learn this medium-difficult work successfully in a few rehearsals. The Soprano Solo requires a skilled, advanced singer, and the accompanying instrumental parts will satisfy accomplished players. I strongly recommend this as a work that can successfully anchor a Christmas program.