LYRIC: Ave Verum


Todd's fourth commissioned collaboration with composer Jake Runestad is a choral prelude to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's "Ave Verum Corpus."


Todd's text, "Ave Verum," narrates the careful bathing of the body of Christ by those who recovered it prior to the resurrection, and Runestad's setting for choir and string orchestra establishes the text as an introduction to Mozart's classic, so that the two works become one seamless piece.


Reverent, mystical, a kind of minor-key lullaby, the work was premiered by 400 voices and the Choral Arts Society of Washington at Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.


The score is available for SATB and full orchestra from JR Music.



The challenge I set for myself in writing this text was to put myself into Mozart's heart, and to imagine what he may have been feeling or thinking about as he was preparing to write his famous "Ave Verum Corpus." I don't think of this text as Christian, even though it's subject matter is Christian. I think of it as very secular: What was it like, this holy moment, for those mortals who were there that day?


Todd is grateful to the following for support of his work: Forecast Public Art, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, The McKnight Foundation, The Metropolitan Regional Arts Council of/and The Minnesota State Arts Board, The National Endowment for the Arts, The San Francisco Arts Commission, and the Warhol Foundation, as well as individual commissions and supporters on Patreon

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