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The Crossing: A Native Hill
Following from the huge success of The Fifth Century, written for The Crossing and Prism Saxophone Quartet, which won a Grammy for Best Choral performance in Jan uary 2018, Gavin has written a nsubstantial new a capella, work that builds on the considerable experience that he has of working with the choir, and the many close personal friendships within it. For this he has set text from the American writer Wendell Berry’s early essay A Native Hill (1968). Berry, now in his eighties, has written a great deal – poetry, essays, novels – from the perspective of his life as a farmer in rural Kentucky, where he has lived and worked for over 50 years. He is one of the world’s finest writers, and perhaps because of his apparent isolation has been called a “modern-day Thoreau” and certainly his work is as politically charged as that of his 19th century predecessor. Gavin decided to set prose texts rather than the poetry, although, like Thomas Traherne who was the writer used for The Fifth Century, this “prose” has great poetic beauty.
It is dedicated to “The Crossing, and my friends within.”
Church of the Holy Trinity Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia, The Crossing’s “Friday night, 2 weeks before Christmas” concert December 14 at 8pm. Sunday December 16 at 5pm at Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill, The Crossing’s “Home Church.”