Adonai Anthem: General Anthem for SATB voices and Piano

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9780687644308: Adonai Anthem: General Anthem for SATB voices and Piano

A song of praise and worship centered around the name of God “Adonai.” Set in F minor, the rubato tempo provides the musical freedom for personal interpretation as the soloist or section presents the opening segment. A duet or TB divisi joins in measure 12 with refrain material, singing various names of God. Unison women continue in measure 23 as the text praises God in all of life's circumstances. Unison men join divided women at the return of the refrain. A key change to F sharp minor places the altos and men in unison on the melody with a brief soprano descant. Unison voices complete the stanza followed by a four-part homophonic refrain. The anthem quiets and slows into a prayerful final statement to round out the setting.

The piano accompaniment flows, creating haunting harmonic undertones while supporting the voices. Accidentals bring interest to the chord flavors and help propel the tonality through moments of praise and humble worship. The vocal parts are suited to four-part adult ensembles. Rhythmic and melodic repetition will assist the learning process.

Performance options include singing the first section as solo or soli. Although set for a male voice, this may be performed by a woman singing one octave higher than written. The duet at measure 12 may be performed as written or with divided men. The unison women's entrance in measure 23 may be sung as a solo with tutti choir entering at measure 31. Youth and adult ensembles will enjoy learning this work. This may be sung as a prayer anthem, call to prayer, offertory, or as a general anthem.

Appropriate days: general worship.

Age Level 5-7

Difficulty of vocal parts 6

Difficulty of accompaniment 6

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About the Author:

Mark A. Miller is a lecturer in the Practice of Sacred Music at Yale University. Since 1994 he has served on the faculty at Drew Theological School. He is director of Contemporary Worship at Marble Collegiate Church in New York City. He is known in churches throughout the country as a worship leader, teacher, composer, and performer of sacred music. He received his B.A. degree in music from Yale University, and his M.Mus degree in organ performance from Juilliard.


Laurie Zelman is the author of full length plays, numerous sacred musicals (including commissioned works), skits, and congregational songs. Laurie is the Minister of Education and the Arts at Cranford UMC, a freelance writer, and a Deacon in Full Connection with a specialty in Arts Ministries. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and has two daughters.

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