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979-0-57036-511-1 A tear – Choral score Available at MusicRoom Buy now (£2.25)


A tear is a piece about love and grief. The text is the first stanza of a fourteenth-century English poem on the crucifixion. The original reads:

Lovely ter of lovely eiye,
Why dostu me so wo?
Sorful ter of sorful eiye,
Thu brekst mine herte ato.

The music follows a clear structure: the poem is sung four times to the same melody, each time with different numbers of singers and in a slightly different way. In between these verses are organ ‘toccatas’. These toccatas are not embellishments or commentaries on the choral verses so much as spaces for reflection.

A tear was commissioned by The Organ Project, Union Chapel.


9 minutes
Anonymous 14th century English poem, modernised

Eclectic Voices, James McVinnie (organ), Scott Stroman, director), Union Chapel, London, 18th April 2014

1 Mixed Chorus, 1 Organ
Composition date


8 April 2017

Holy Cross Priory, Leicester

Leicestershire Chorale/Tom Williams

2 April 2016

St John’s, Smith Square, London, SW1P 3HA

EXAUDI, James McVinnie (organ), cond. James Weeks

18 April 2014

Union Chapel, London

Eclectic Voices cond. Scott Stroman