James MacMillan: O Bone Jesu

McGregor, Richard (2007) James MacMillan: O Bone Jesu. Scottish Music Review, 2 .

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Abstract

MacMillan first became aware of the original Carver motet while in Manchester in the 1980s. There, under David Fallows he arranged for a performance of it. In his programme note for the CD he speaks of wanting to find an opportunity to use the text himself, an opportunity presented by the commission from The Sixteen for performance in a programme which would include the original Carver. Although he asserts that no reference is made to the original, well, not consciously one might add, it is significant that MacMillan dedicated this work to his twins on the occasion of their First Communion, because the text speaks of ‘the most precious blood of Jesus’ which will ‘wash way …sin’, clearly a very appropriate text for a Catholic First Communion. However I think there is more to it than that. If you were here last year you may remember that MacMillan speaks of the starting point for a work being ‘transubstantiated into the musical’. Here then is perhaps the most potent of metaphors in relation to the text: the text which speaks of the power of the blood of Christ is itself ‘transubstantiated’ into MacMillan’s new musical setting of those very words.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Scottish Music Review
Publisher: Scottish Music Review
ISSN: 1755-4934
Related URL(s):
Departments: Faculty of Education, Arts and Business > Institute of Education > Secondary PGCE
Additional Information: Originally presented as a paper at the 2007 Musica Scotia Conference, University of Glasgow. Supplement can be found at: http://www.scottishmusicreview.org/index.php/SMR/rt/suppFiles/19/17 A powerpoint is available for this lecture and can be obtained for personal use on application to the respective author.
Depositing User: Insight Administrator
Date Deposited: 06 May 2010 13:37
Last Modified: 01 Dec 2017 17:11
URI: http://insight.cumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/145

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