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Sample pagesfor mixed choir (SATB div) a cappella
Text: English (William Shakespeare)
Duration: 4'30''
Difficulty: 3/5
Use: Wedding, Civil Ceremony, Shakespeare, Love

William Shakespeare’s famous sonnet (‘Let me not to the marriage of true minds Admit impediments’), often used at weddings and civil ceremonies, is here set to beautiful, fresh music by young composer Ed Newton-Rex. The mostly homophonic setting employs the composer’s distinctive close harmonies, which, together with short phrases and natural rhythm, serve to add greater meaning to the poignant and moving text. Spells of parallel and contrary motion in the inner parts are intended in some way to reflect important elements of the commitment two people make to each other in marriage or partnership. Sonnet 116 is sure to add an unforgettable moment to a happy couple’s special day, and would also be an excellent addition to concerts using a theme of love.

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixéd mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

William Shakespeare

Ed Newton-Rex
Ed was both a chorister and a choral scholar in the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, and has written for a number of groups, including The King’s Singers, VOCES8 and the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge. He has also composed music for theatre in London’s West End. The technology company he founded, Jukedeck, is working on artificial intelligence in music and has won several awards including a Cannes Innovation Lion. He lectures and writes about the intersection of artificial intelligence and creativity.

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