Stephen Syverud

I Corinthians 13

(high male voice, trumpet, english horn, 'cello)

Audio sample (.mp3)

Score sample (.pdf - Click here to acquire Adobe Acrobat Reader).

Program Notes:

I CORINTHIANS 13 was written for and performed at my first wedding in December, 1962. The instrumentation is Bb trumpet, English horn, violincello, and high spoken male voice (Rue Knapp). The pitch selection is controlled by the use of a twelve-tone row and a characteristic motive heard throughout the one movement is two melodic tritones, the second a perfect fourth below the first. The text is spoken (not sung), from the Bible, and is the entire 13th chapter of First Corinthians.

1. Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not Love, I am become as sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal. 2. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains and have not Love, I am nothing. 3. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not Love, it profiteth me nothing.4. Love suffereth long, and is kind; Love envieth not; Love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, 5. Doth not behave itself unseemingly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; 6. Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; 7. Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. 8. LOVE NEVER FAILETH: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away,9. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. 10. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.11. When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
12. For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. 13. And now abideth Faith, Hope, Love, these three; but the greatest of these is Love.

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