Mormon Tabernacle Choir: Tree of Life (Music CD) *
Artist: Mormon Tabernacle Choir
Tree of Life: Sacred Music of Mack Wilberg is the next recording by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square. Coming May 4, 2018, this anticipated new album features the premiere recordings of two larger-scale New Testament themed choral works composed by Mack Wilberg—with six additional compositions and three hymn arrangements—all previously unrecorded.
Listeners around the world have admired Wilberg as one of the leading choral conductors of our time—as well as a talented arranger and orchestrator. But many may not be aware of Mack Wilberg’s reputation as a composer of original choral music, a field in which he also occupies a leading position today.
Wilberg’s two larger choral works on this recording include The Prodigal, which retells the parable of the prodigal son found in Luke, and A Cloud of Witnesses,which weaves multiple witnessing stories of Christ’s Resurrection into a tapestry drawing on accounts from all four Gospel writers. In these original compositions, Wilberg has collaborated with David Warner, a longtime associate and author who has penned numerous texts for him. Both of these choral works were premiered in recent years by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square—but this will be the first recording of the works.
“Wilberg’s experience and involvement with sacred choral repertories powerfully influences his original compositions. His understanding of composition possibilities is broad and versatile, derived from an understanding of sacred music that encompasses many centuries and faith traditions,” musicologist Dr. Luke Howard has written. “When composing a new piece with an original text, Wilberg selects a musical character that will connect effectively with the text, the performance, the audience, and his own compositional insights.”
For a preview of a few of the additional compositions or arrangements on this recording, check out these videos from previous Choir and Orchestra performances:
- “All People That on Earth Do Dwell”
- “Tree of Life”
- “How Can I Keep from Singing?”
- “It Is Well with My Soul”
Mack Wilberg has directed the Mormon Tabernacle Choir since 2008, having served previously as its associate director from 1999 and, before then, conductor of Brigham Young University’s Concert Choir and Men’s Chorus. Many of his popular hymn, carol, and song arrangements were written expressly for these ensembles.