Into the Light

Rated 5.00 out of 5 based on 3 customer ratings
(3 customer reviews)

**AVAILABLE FOR PERFORMANCES AFTER NOVEMBER OF 2017.**

16:00. Chorus & orchestra.

Instrumental parts will be available on rental from the publisher. Contact us for rental details.

 

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About the Work

Commissioned by Valparaiso University in commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation (1517-2017). Christopher M. Cock, conductor, Valparaiso University Chorale, and director of the Bach Institute. Funded through the Hoermann-Koch Sacred Music Endowment at Valparaiso University.

**This work will be available for performances after November of 2017.**
 
The Story:
The Reformation was a pivotal event in the history of Western culture and created waves of change across Europe that spread to the rest of the world — the impact of which is still being felt (and studied) today.

Commemorating an historical event with a work of art, especially 500 years later, is no small feat — there are centuries of complexities to unpack and the event itself cannot be summed-up in a 15-minute musical work. Rather than create a museum piece for the Reformation, I asked myself what reforming means in our world today: What are the major issues plaguing our world and what is their cause? Who has addressed these issues through their work and their words (in the vein of Martin Luther)? How can I address these issues through a musical work for chorus and orchestra in a meaningful way?

To find the right texts, I scoured through hundreds of writings by individuals who I consider reformers — those who have worked to improve their community, their country, and/or the world. Along the way, I also discovered the book “The Witness of Religion in an Age of Fear” by Michael Kinnamon. Kinnamon addresses fear and how it has infiltrated our culture and causes many of the issues we face including institutional racism, xenophobia, cultural divisions, and fear of “the other.” Many of the writings that I collected also speak to this negative power of fear and how we must work to move beyond it.

The chorale is a staple of the Lutheran movement and I wanted it to be an important element of this work. I am especially inspired by the writers/reformers whose texts I’ve used — knowing their stories, struggles, and successes provides such depth and greatly influences the music. I encourage you and your students to delve into their lives and work in order to fully grasp the meaning of their words.

It is my hope that this new work, “Into the Light,” allows us to be immersed in the wisdom of some of the most important and influential reformers in history, and challenges us to consider how we can move beyond fear and onto a path of love, compassion, and kindness.
 
Listen:

 
Full Score:
Coming soon.
 
Duration: 17:00
 
Premiere: September 30, 2017. Valparaiso University, Valparaiso, IN.
 
Text:

I. THE UNIVERSE OF LIGHT

Come out into the universe of light.
Everything in the universe is yours,
stretch out your arms and embrace it with love.
(Swami Vivekananda)

You are a product of your thoughts. What you think, you become.
(Gandhi)

II. THE LIGHTLESS DARK

The only lightless dark is the night of ignorance.
We differ from one another, not in our senses,
but in the use we make of them.
(Helen Keller)

III. THE WARM FOGS OF FEAR

The ice under us is very thin, and is made weak by the warm fogs of fear.
(Frederick Douglass)

We are driven by love or by fear.
I fear you, for I do not know you.
(After Martin Luther King Jr.)

There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear.
(John the Evangelist)

IV. FLOWER INTO KINDNESS

The soul is made of love and must ever return to love.
There is nothing so wise,
nor so beautiful,
nor so strong as love.
(Mechthild von Magdeburg)

Above all, love.
(Peter the Apostle)

I shed my words on the earth
as the tree sheds its leaves.
Let my thoughts unspoken
flower into kindness.
(Rabindranath Tagore, adapt. Runestad)

V. INTO THE LIGHT

We are not yet what we shall be,
but we are growing toward it.
(Martin Luther)

Come out into the universe of light.
Everything in the universe is yours,
stretch out your arms and embrace it with love.
(Swami Vivekananda)

3 reviews for Into the Light

  1. Rated 5 out of 5

    Gail Lutze

    Absolutely beautiful! I was privileged to attend the workshop prior to the concert at VU, and then the concert. I do not know of any time that a piece of music has thrilled and delighted me as much as this. Thank You, Jake, for inspiring and thrilling us!

  2. Rated 5 out of 5

    Zach Krampien

    As a member of the Choral that premiered this piece, after singing it in rehearsal probably a hundred times, I started feeling like there was nothing special about this piece. However, I heard the official recording a week after the premier and found myself in tears over the beauty of the piece. Never had such an emotional experience about a song before, much less one I had essentially heard everyday.

  3. Rated 5 out of 5

    Matthew Bremer

    Where to even begin. I was a member of the Valparaiso University Chorale when this song was world premiered. I have never been more honored than in the fact that Jake has given us a song that is so beautiful and so powerful and that has a message that the whole world could really use to hear. The text, the idea, the expressive emotion, all these things are so perfectly constructed in this piece. It’s not always easy to hear that change is necessary, especially when we are what needs changing. There are so many parts of the text that speaks to me and the kind of person that I want to be.

    “You are a product of your thoughts. What you think you become.” – Reforming the way we think about the world, about others, about ourselves, that has such a powerful impact on everything around us.

    “There is nothing so wise nor so beautiful, nor so strong as love.” – It’s a cliche, but if we just start by giving a little more love, to those who do and don’t deserve it, we can change the world.

    “Let my thoughts unspoken flower into kindness.” – a wise man once told me “let your actions be animated by pure and lofty motives.” The intent behind your attitude and your actions has to be in line with the kind of person you want to be and the kind of world you want to see.

    “Come out into the universe of light. Everything in the universe is yours, stretch out your arms and embrace it with love.” – The world is yours to shape and change. So go out there, and love. Love unconditionally.

    I’ve performed this song dozens of times, practiced it hundreds, but it never fails to not only take my breath away but also to make me reconsider what I am doing to reform the world today. Congratulations to you Jake on this piece. I cannot wait to sing it in Germany and to bring your message and the message of those great people you have been inspired by to a world that so desperately needs it.

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