The use of text in three twentieth-century settings of "Psalm 150": Implications for the conductor

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (D.M.A.)


Music Conducting

First Committee Member

Donald T. Oglesby, Committee Chair


Psalm 150 has been the subject of many choral settings as is evident in the Sacred Choral Music in Print catalog listings. Psalm 150 is the last of the Psalms in the Bible and functions as a concluding doxology to the entire Psalter. The popularity of this text in musical settings is undoubtedly, at least in part, a result of the numerous musical references in the Psalm and the festive nature of its text.This comparative study of three musical settings of Psalm 150 provides the choral conductor with a historical account of the text, followed by a score analysis of each composer's setting: Heinz Werner Zimmermann, Alberto Ginastera, and Benjamin Britten. The concluding chapter is a discussion of the similarities and differences among these settings.The inherent textual outline of Psalm 150 provides the composer with a formal frame with which to develop his individual musical interpretation. This three-part structure forms the basis for these three compositions.



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