See, I am God

SATB (with divisions) and piano or organ
Duration: 4 minutes | Difficulty: Moderately Difficult – Difficult

Inspired by Brahms’ classic ‘Geistliches Lied’, ‘See, I am God’ by Michael Higgins with a text by Julian of Norwich was commissioned by Sonoro for their ‘Choral Inspirations’ project. Higgins has taken and enhanced the rich harmonic language used by Brahms, as well as playing with fragments of his melodies and has included a double-canon in the structure. The overall feeling is one of calm, comfort and serenity. This accessible new work is scored for SATB and piano or organ.

Fauré Requiem

S, Bar solo, SATB, string quintet and organ

This new arrangement for string quintet and organ was first performed on Remembrance Sunday in 2007 in the intimate setting of the choir stalls at St John’s Church, Wimbledon. By using a small number of singers, similar to the twenty or so in Fauré’s choir at the Madeleine, added to the chamber music quality of the strings, unique colours and textures are created which breathe new life into an otherwise familiar but continually evolving work.

View me, Lord

SATB unaccompanied
Duration: 2.5 minutes | Difficulty: Easy – Moderately Difficult

With a text by Thomas Campion, View me, Lord is a tender prayer characterized by its sensitive text-setting. Each verse features a change in voicing, rhythm, and harmony, while the ever-changing metre provides a feeling of fluidity. The tension built throughout the work is finally resolved in the last chord, bringing this contemplative anthem to a peaceful close.

“Another piece that could well contribute to the structure of a concert is View me, Lord . . . Higgins’s version is a simple, homophonic account featuring contemporary harmony that won’t frighten the horses. The general effect is one of tenderness and warmth – exactly the words the composer himself uses at the top of the piece.”

Jeremy Jackman, Choir & Organ, February 2020

O salutaris Hostia

SSATB unaccompanied
Duration: 3 minutes | Difficulty: Moderately Difficult

In this sensitive choral arrangement of ‘Nimrod’ from Elgar’s Enigma Variations, Michael Higgins sets the Eucharistic hymn ‘O salutaris Hostia’, written by St Thomas Aquinas for the Feast of Corpus Christi. The familiar melody passes seamlessly between the voice parts, and Elgar’s lush, rich sound world is perfectly emulated by the choral textures Higgins has fashioned.

May the road rise to meet you

SSA and piano
Duration: 2.5 minutes | Difficulty: Very Easy – Easy

Michael Higgins’s gentle setting of the traditional Gaelic Blessing has a memorable melody, a flowing piano part, and a beautiful, soaring soprano descant in the second verse. Written for the National Children’s Choir of Great Britain, the piece would be particularly suitable for children’s choirs.

“Demand for settings of the ‘Gaelic Blessing’ shows no sign of abating this ‘new’ one . . . has its own musical language that is easy on the ear, with a warm romanticism and an idiomatic piano part that contains much of the interest. There is variety in the choral textures, and I’m sure that young singers would enjoy it.”

James L. Montgomery, Sunday by Sunday (RSCM), December 2020