Jubilate Deo

Good afternoon, everyone!

It’s that time of year again! Special Music Sunday! Maybe I’m biased (I absolutely am), but these are some of my favorite Sundays. This week, you will get to hear an exuberant piece of music. Jubilate Deo composed by Dan Forrest. And, as far as I know, this will be the Central Texas premiere of this work!

Written in 2016, Jubilate Deo is a 45ish minute setting of Psalm 100 in seven (yes, seven) languages. Latin, Arabic, Hebrew, Mandarin Chinese, Zulu, Spanish, and English. The UBC Choir will be joined by the UCC choir this Sunday in our sanctuary to perform this magnificent piece of music. Dan Forrest wrote this music with the intention of evoking the culture of every language through music while incorporating his own musical language. The result is an engaging piece of music with constantly changing moods to not only paint a picture of the text but to paint of picture of that language.

So, why this piece of music? There are plenty of jubilant pieces of choral music that we could have performed. Pieces of music that are in only one language (I’m sure the choir would’ve been less traumatized by that…). But there’s something so beautiful about performing one piece that encompasses seven different languages and cultures. A sign of unity that we so desperately need in this world.

While the Lux Aeterna we performed in December had a quiet, inward joy about it, Jubilate Deo is a boisterous expression of outward joy complete with fanfares, complex rhythms, African drumming, and a choir of 30 singers with a small chamber orchestra comprised of UT students, congregation members, and professional musicians. I am confident you will be moved by this music.

I encourage you to invite a friend (or several!) who you think would enjoy this music or one who has never experienced something like this!

I look forward to sharing this Sunday with you,

Jonathan Castillo
Minister of Music & Outreach

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