George Emlen

To order or inquire about any of the following works, contact George Emlen directly, or follow links to other publishers.

Song of Acadia (2016). Tenor solo, SATB chorus and cello. Text by the composer. Commission from the Acadia Choral Society (Bar Harbor, Maine) for the 100th anniversary of Acadia National Park. In this piece we hear the ancient voice of Mount Desert Island speaking its wisdom and welcome to us. Duration 10:00. First page here. Complete audio here.
Before a Common Soil (2016) – SATB chorus, brass quintet and timpani. Text by Ifeanyi Menkiti. Written for the 45th anniversary of Revels. The poem is a tribute to Revels founder John Langstaff and a celebration of the universality of the human experience. Duration 6:00. Page 1 of piano-vocal score here.
A Psalm of Praise (2007) – SATB choir and piano. Psalm 148. An exuberant anthem for general use within reach of most choirs, with brief solo passages for each section. Duration 2:45. Published by Lorenz/Sacred Music Press. Check out score and recording here.
Drop Down, Ye Heavens (2006) – SATB choir and piano. Isaiah 45:8 and Psalm 85:10-11. Uptempo, gospel-inflected anthem for any season. Duration 3:00. Published by the Lorenz/Sacred Music Press. Check out score and recording here.
Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis (2006) – SSATTB choir a capella with soprano (Magnificat) and baritone (Nunc Dimittis) soloists. Commission from First Methodist Church of Fort Worth, Texas. The choir sings in Latin and the soloists in English, often together, in these two famous canticles. The combination of a dense a capella texture and no barlines makes for a challenging pair of pieces. Duration 5:00 (Magnificat) and 2:30 (Nunc Dimittis). Check out page 1 of Magnificat and page 1 of Nunc Dimittis. Listen to Nunc Dimittis here.
Peace at the Last (2006) – SATB choir a capella. Text is by John Henry Newman. Perfect brief prayer for an evening service or a funeral. Duration 1:00. Take a look here.
Earth Canticle (2005) – SATB (div.), piano or organ. Texts from Psalms and Isaiah; Kyrie from the Roman mass. Written for the 2006 choral composition competition at the First Methodist Church of Fort Worth, Texas. The first section extols the wonders and beauty of the earth; the second decries the greed and folly of those who would despoil it; the third asks mercy from God for our transgressions against our earthly habitat; and the fourth imagines a world at peace. Duration 4:30. Look at page 1 here.
Veni Sancte Spiritus (2003) – SATB, brass quintet & timpani. Sequence for Pentecost. Commission from Mount Desert Summer Chorale, Bar Harbor, Maine, to honor the memory of trombonist Mark Horner. Duration 7:00. First page of piano-vocal score here. Complete audio here.
Sanctus (2003) – SATB a capella. Text from the Roman mass. Exuberant anthem for any season, with abundant contrapuntal textures. Soon to be published by Lorenz/Sacred Music Press. Duration 3:30. First page here.
Hymn for a New Land (2001) – Unison children’s voices, SATB, with organ or piano, text from Psalm 118. Written for a Revels production, the piece gives voice to hopeful Irish, Italian and Jewish immigrants as
their ship enters New York Harbor and they first catch sight of the Statue of Liberty. Published by Thorpe. Optional expanded orchestration includes violin or recorder, accordion, double bass, brass quintet and timpani (but the piece works very nicely with organ or piano). Duration 2:30. Complete audio (from Revels recording Strike the Harp: An Irish Christmas Revels) here. Order from Theodore Presser.
Wedding Song (2001) – SATB a capella, from Edmund Spenser’s “Epithalamion.” Written for dear friends’ nuptials. Mixed meter used liberally to honor the rhythms of Spenser’s poetry. Duration 1:30. Page 1 here.
A Moment in Summer (2000) – SSA, piano. Poems by seven poets, including Christina Rosetti and Carl Sandburg, that capture the many moods of summer. Ideal for experienced children’s chorus. Duration 6:00. Here is page 1.
Does Not Wisdom Call Out? (1999) – Soprano solo, SATB, organ. Proverbs 8:1-5. Wisdom is personified by a female voice imploring mankind to be smarter. Works well as an introit. Duration 1:30. Take a quick look here.
I Am the Good Shepherd (1999) – SATB, organ. John 10:14-16. A message of comfort and inclusiveness, suitable for any occasion. Duration 2:00. Soon to be published by Lorenz. Look at page 1 here.
God Speaks to Each of Us (1998) – SATB a capella on text by Rainer Maria Rilke, from his Book of Hours: Love Poems to God. A moving poem on our role in God’s creation. Much mixed meter. Duration 1:45.
Take Joy! (1997) – SATB, piano. Text by Fra Giovanni Giacondo, 1513. Inspiring message of love, peace and joy in an accessible choral style. Duration 2:30. Check out page 1 here.
Mariner’s Anthem (1997) – SATB, organ. Psalm 107:23-30. A dramatic setting, with an active organ accompaniment, of a vivid text describing the “wonders of the deep,” with its terrifying storms and peaceful calms. Duration 5:30. Take a quick look here.
I Will Declare Thy Name (1994) – SATB, organ. From Psalm 22. Ideal introit, starting off with energy and ending softly. Duration 1:15. Take a look here.
To You, O Lord (1992) – Two-part mixed choir, organ. From Psalm 25. Prayerful supplication interrupted by short outburst.
Duration 2:45. Published by Lorenz/Sacred Music Press -- take a look and order here. Complete recording here.
Protect Me, O God (1992) – Two-part choir (SA, TB or mixed), organ. From Psalm 16. Energetic song of trust in God. Mixed meter. Duration 1:45. Take a peek here.
The Wind Bloweth Where It Listeth (1990) – SAB, organ. John 3:8. This evocative text is given a straightforward musical expression, engaging in some counterpoint and ending gently. Duration 1:45. Published by Lawson-Gould. (This octavo is now out of print; contact the composer to make arrangements for reprinting.)
The Wind Bloweth Where It Listeth (1987) – SATB choir, brief solo for any voice, organ. John 3:8. Two-part (ST/AB) writing dominates but gives way to SATB and closes in unison. Duration 2:30.
The Twenty-Third Psalm (with Noel Stookey, 1986) – Soprano and mezzo-soprano soloists, SATB, organ or string quartet, also available with three trumpets, harp and organ. A satisfying and moving piece for singers and audiences alike. The cantata is in five movements: The Lord Is my Shepherd, He Leadeth Me, Yea, Though I Walk, Thou Preparest a Table Before Me, and Surely Goodness and Mercy. It is a loving hommage to J.S. Bach, using forms such as passacaglia and fugue and techniques such as sequences. Duration 14:00
The Owl and Pussycat (1985) – SA (mostly unison) chorus or solos, piano. Text: Edward Lear. Delightful setting of the classic poem. Fun piano part. Duration 1:45. Here is how it begins.
Open Now Thy Gates of Beauty, Zion (1984) – SATB a capella. Text: Benjamin Schmolk (1672-1737). Devotional text. Winner of the 1984 AGO (Maine chapter) choral composition competition. Vigorous open fifths and close imitation bracket a quiet center section. Duration 3:45. First page here.
Carol of the Birds (1980s) – SATB a capella. Words and music by John Jacob Niles. The birds celebrate the birth of Christ in this Appalachian-styled song of worship. Duration 2:00.
Walking on the Green Grass (2002) – SATB, piano. Appalachian folk song also known as “Soldier Boy.” The narrator states in no uncertain terms her preference for military lads over farmers, blacksmiths and doctors. Duration 2:30.
Le Semeur (The Sower, 1999) – Baritone solo, SATB, piano (optional string quartet with guitar or harp). Breton folksong, in French (with pronunciation guide). A farmer reflects as he sows the seeds for the coming year's harvest. Published by Thorpe Music Publishing/Theodore Presser.
Bheir mí Ó (Sad Am I, 1999) – SATB, piano or harp. Scottish folksong, in Gaelic (with pronunciation guide) and English. Well-known, tender love song with echoes of the sea. Published by Thorpe Music Publishing/Theodore Presser.
Fare You Well, Mary Ann (1998) – Baritone solo, SATB, piano (optional violin, guitar, accordion and double bass). Canadian folksong. A sailor proclaims his love and pledges his fidelity to his sweetheart before shipping out. Published by Thorpe Music Publishing.
One Man Shall Mow My Meadow (1994) – Two female solos, SATB, piano (with optional cello and double bass). English folksong. A cumulative (expanding with each verse) harvest song that captures the swinging motion of the scythe. Published by Thorpe Music Publishing/Theodore Presser.

A collection of ten organ preludes on folk carols from around the world is to be published by Lorenz/Sacred Music Press in the fall of 2018.