Chorale: In Memoriam

From Wind Repertory Project
Stephen Hill

Stephen Hill

Subtitle: To my good friends C. Dean Morris (1957-2009), Dr. W. Francis McBeth (1933-2012)

General Info

Year: 1980 / 2018
Duration: c. 7:00
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: SARAHTIM Music Publishing
Cost: Score and Parts - Contact Publisher


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II-III
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
String Bass
Percussion, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Chimes
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Glockenspiel
  • Tam-tam
  • Vibraphone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Chorale is the original title of this piece and "To my good friends, C. Dean Morris and Dr. W. Francis McBeth" is the original dedication from 1980. Dean and I were classmates at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. We had both specifically gone to Ouachita to study with Dr. McBeth. Dean was from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and I was from Norwalk, California.

Chorale was composed in late 1979 and early 1980 for my senior composition recital. The mental picture I had in mind while composing Chorale was the very last few minutes in the life of Christ. It is a meditation on the sorrow and suffering of the rejected Savior: the pain of nails piercing flesh, the agony of being rejected and suspended between Heaven and Earth, and the final cry of release with the word, "It is finished." Bach's Crucifixus from his St. Matthew's Passion was also influential.

Chorale was written for my friends C. Dean Morris and Dr. W. Francis McBeth. Usually a piece such as this is written after the passing of a beloved friend. Fortunately for me, Dr. McBeth saw the composing of this piece from the first note to the last as I brought it to class each week. Chorale was first performed by the Ouachita Baptist University Concert Band (Marvin Lawson, director) in April 1980 as part of my senior composition recital with both Dean and Dr. McBeth in the audience. The words, In Memoriam, were added after the passing of both Dean and Dr. McBeth.

The minor second interval that influences the piece can be specifically traced to McBeth's teacher, Clifton Williams' Caccia and Chorale, McBeth's classmate and friend, John Barnes Chance's Symphony No. 2, McBeth's own Kaddish, and to Dean's own In Memoriam to Clifton Williams.

Dean Morris, born in 1957, passed away in 2009 from pancreatic cancer. Dr. W. Francis McBeth, born in 1933, passed away in 2012. I was fortunate to have remained friends with both Dean and Francis for over 30 years.

- Program Note by composer


State Ratings

  • California: SCSBOA IV


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Ouachita Baptist University (Arkadelphia, Ark.) Concert Band (Stephen Hill, conductor)
  • California High School (Whittier, Calif.) Wind Ensemble (Doug Nordquist, conductor)
  • Vanguard University (Costa Mesa, Calif.) Concert Band (Kenneth Foerch, conductor)

Works for Winds by This Composer