Music of Wolfram Wagner

Music of Wolfram Wagner June 21, 2019

Wolfram Wagner has composed a significant number of works that incorporate biblical text, whether as the sole or primary focus, or interspersed with other texts. Unfortunately the only example that is readily available online for you to listen to is his Pater Noster (Our Father):

However, he has an oratorio that explores the story of Job, a work called “According to the Scriptures” that unsurprisingly has scriptural resonances, a Psalm setting, motets, the Ave Maria, and more.

I have not yet discovered what, if anything, in his biography accounts for the significant number of compositions with biblical connections, and so pointers and suggestions related to this will be welcome. Otherwise, I will simply add him to my large document (in other words, my unwieldy information dump) with composers, compositions, and the like with biblical connections, that I draw on when I teach my course on the Bible and music.

Of related interest, Ancient World Online drew attention to “the website of the textual and musical philological database of the earliest medieval Latin songs called Corpus Rythmorum Musicum.” Among the earliest of the works included are the Psalmus contra Donatistas by Augustine. Gary Higginson set texts by Wordsworth to music. No, not him, his nephew, who also engaged in study of the New Testament. See too:

From tears to ecstasy, some aspects of musical performance

Bob Macdonald blogged about his oratorio. Erin Heim talked about studying trumpet and Bible.

See also these calls for papers, including multiple current and future ones from the Yale Journal of Music and Religion:

And as a bonus treat for those who read my blog posts all the way to the end, here is another selection of biblical music for you to enjoy: Cantate Domino by Polish composer Józef Świder.

And one more: Prošnja (The Prayer) by Damijan Močnik:

I haven’t worked out what the text of that last one is…

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