The Piper (2010)

For SATB chorus and flute (doubling piccolo); text by Alice Weaver Flaherty; premiered Sunday, January 23, 2011, 5:00 P.M. at King's Chapel, Boston; The King's Chapel Choir, Vanessa Holroyd, flute under the direction of the composer; program included works by Daniel Pinkham, James Woodman, and Carson Cooman. Commissioned by King's Chapel.


Transcript from Elizabeth Thompson’s introduction to “The Piper,” January 23, 2011

"May I have your attention, please.  We have one other anniversary to celebrate, and we would like you all to help by staying for a few more minutes.  Heinrich Christensen has served King’s Chapel since the year 2000, more than 10 years, as Music Director and Organist, and recently as an accomplished composer.  His work has made and important impact on the members of our congregation, and on Boston’s wider musical world.  He is admired and loved for his rare combination of intelligence, musicianship, and professionalism, in addition to his great wit and humor, and his genuine humility.  In recognition and celebration of his years of service, the choir will now present him with a musical gift, prepared in his honor."


The poem, "The Piper," by Alice Weaver Flaherty

Music takes us out of our small boxes,
Out of the cramped houses of our brains.
Music leads us away from ourselves,
From all we know too well.
Music brings us to a greater place of space and light,
Where we meet others and rejoice.

We do not sing alone; a master leads us;
A kappelmeister, a teacher,
But also a pied piper
Whose music chases the vermin from our heads,
Whose songs entice us to sing as one.

And so we praise this man, our piper.
Music, which can lure children from their mothers,
Made him leave his distant home,
And now we too are enchanted.