mixed chorus

This choral piece is one of five a cappella works (of 70 minutes’ duration in total), written on commission by the Bergen International Music Festival and first performed in 1996. The idea behind the pieces was to reflect various sacred choral traditions within European music, and to reflect them through perspectives of our time—both musical and sacred. Thus, the tonal or modal character of the original musical models was transferred into a spectro-tonal pitch universe, while the sacred texts were taken from the recently revealed Bahá’í Scripture. “The Light that is shed…” takes its inspiration from the Baroque era’s monumental polyphonic music of praise. —Lasse Thoresen

The text is: In the name of God, the One, the Incomparable, the All-Powerful, the All-knowing, the All-Wise. Praise be to God, the Eternal that perisheth not, the Everlasting that declineth not, the Self-Subsisting that altereth not. He it is Who is transcendent in His sovereignty, Who is manifest through His signs, and is hidden through His mysteries. He it is at Whose bidding the standard of the Most Exalted Word hat been lifted up in the World of creation, and the banner of “He doeth whatsoever He willeth” raised amidst all peoples… The Light that is shed from the heaven of bounty, and the benediction that shineth from the dawning-place of the will of God, the Lord of the Kingdom of Names, rest upon Him Who is the Supreme Mediator, the Most Exalted Pen, Him Whom God hath made the dawning-place of His most excellent names and the dayspring of this most exalted attributes. Through Him the light of unity hath shone forth above the horizon of the world, and the law of oneness hath been revealed amidst the nations, who, with radiant faces, have turned towards the Supreme Horizon, and acknowledged that which the Tongue of Utterance hath spoken in the kingdom of His knowledge: “Earth and heaven, glory and dominion are God’s, the Omnipotent, the Almighty, the Lord of grace abounding!” (Bahá’ulláh 1817-1892)