Conversion of Saul, The

Composed by Z. Randall Stroope
Voicing: SSAATTBB a cappella
Catalog number: AMP 0530
Price: $2.30

ABOUT THE WORK

After the stoning of Stephen, Saul launched an all out persecution of the early Christian church and became legendary in his pursuit to exterminate all who "believed." But as Saul (also called Paul) later wrote, he was blinded by a light from heaven as he traveled to Damascus and was confronted by a voice that called out to him, saying "Saul, why do you persecute me?" This event has become known as "the conversion of Saul," as Saul turned from his murderous deeds and spent the remainder of his life as a Christian missionary. This musical work ("The Conversion of Saul") begins with a raucous depiction of death and destruction through highly accentuated rhythmic treatment and repeated agitation of the text. A pedal tone emerges in the middle of the piece, symbolizing the "one true light." This continuum of light brings Saul to his knees, and "commissions" him to a life of "turning hatred into love" and bringing compassion to those around him.

Caedite, vexate, ligate vinculis! 		Saul! Murder, harass, bind into chains! Saul!
Vinculis, condemnate vexate!		 Chain, prosecute and harass!
Why do you persecute me, Saul? Why, why, why? Fall down on your knees, turn hatred into love. Turn darkness into light. Bow down, Saul! Bow down, Saul! Saul, Saul, Saul.

recorded excerpt performed by The University of Nebraska Omaha Concert Choir
Omaha, Nebraska
Z. Randall Stroope, conductor.
A complete recording is availabe on the CD
"Passages Vol II: The Choral Music of Z. Randall Stroope"

Click here to see a sample.

Click here to listen to a sample (MP3).



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