Salva Me ^^


Do you fancy listening to choirs? Those magnificent voice which is so harmonious it gives you goose bumps all over, especially when they’ve reached Timbres Conglomerate (when their voices rounded up into one) then to the Pinnacle ( where the soloist would reach a high C note or much higher octave). Or maybe you’ve heard the Vienna Choir Boys? If so, you’ll get the drift.

I for one, awes at this magnificent talent ( I am the English Teacher cum Choir Instructor at my school so it was obvious)

I was listening to a few rendition of choirs in preparation for this August Inter-Zone Choir Competition and I could not help but noticing this superb choir boys, Libera.


“ Libera, as we know it today, is the publicly performing boys section of St. Philip's Church choir from South London. Their concept is to make boychoir music more accessible to a wider audience, many of whom might be put off by the words 'church choir', by integrating classical and traditional music with a more contemporary, mainstream sound. The repertoire they sing as Libera is in addition to, not a replacement of, their church singing. It does not detract from the fact that the core activity of the choir is their duty as part of the Anglican parish church. When heard during Sunday services, they are more like other church choirs than the Libera we see on TV and hear on CDs.
To help distinguish between the two there have been different names given to their separate roles as a choral group - first, the St. Philip's Boys' Choir, then in 1990 they changed to Angel Voices, then to Libera in 1998 ("Libera" being the Latin word for "Free", the title of their 2004 album).
St. Philip's Church is over 100 years old and has a long choral history. Its choir was established many decades ago and became a firm foundation on which the future was built. As a result of this, the current key to Libera's public success and popularity lies with two former St. Philip's choirboys - Robert Prizeman, choirmaster, and Ian Tilley who is the sound and technical genius.
Prizeman often composes and arranges pieces with individual soloists in mind, to emphasise the variety of characteristics and qualities in the boys' voices. The end result illustrates the complexity of his art and the magnitude of his musical excellence. The addition of electronic synthesisers and a judicious use of lower voices, especially from former trebles who stay on with the main church choir, help make the Libera sound so unique. The aim of these is simply to enhance the listening experience by complementing the use of synthesisers with the full tonal range of the boys' voices. As can be heard on many of their album tracks, the electronics are not always necessary - the voices sound equally sublime with or without these extra musical tools. Since it is difficult to label Libera's style as one specific genre, it has come to be widely known by fans across the globe as the "Libera style".
Libera's popularity is also helped by a number of excellent videos produced each year, with the boys in their distinctive white robes, which are broadcast primarily on the BBC's religious programme Songs of Praise, where Prizeman is Musical Adviser, and on Classic FM TV.
By taking a modern approach to classical and church music and succeeding in attracting listeners who would not usually listen to sacred choral music, as well as introducing many people to the world of boychoirs, Libera are already well on the way to achieving what they set out to do ”


My favorite choristers are Thomas Cully (the boy in the front, middle) and Josh Madine (the boy just behind Tom). God, I’ll prostrate to the awesomeness of this choir boys if I could emulate their essence in my choir team. Such an angelic voice. Such superb talent. They’ve performed at the Vatican in the presence of His Holiness The Pope, in front of the US President George W.Bush and are actively partaking in choir tours around Europe and the US.

I wondered, do they even go to school and study like the rest of the kids their age?

Anyways, My favorite songs from this choir boys are :

a) Salva Me

b) Recordarde

c) Ave Maria

d) Orinoco Flow

e) Silent Night

f) Sanctus

g) Far Away

Tom Cully were the soloist in much of these songs, backed by Josh Madine and Ed Day. Tom Cully’s solo rendition, which hits the higher octaves really send shivers down my spine.As I said, he’s my favorite soloist in Libera.

Just being trivial, If I could get my choristers hitting that high notes, would they be able to sing Tanah Pusaka (my card of ace in this choir thingie) or other Malaysian Patriotic songs? Such is our typical Malaysia ; when it comes to school choirs, it must be all out patriotic… hrmm… sometimes, it sucks.

I know it’ll be against the rules and regulations, but for the upcoming Choir Competition, I’ll be putting my bets on Salva Me (lyrics below) as my second song. The first one is of course, the Lagu Wajib..all those patriotic songs *.sigh.

Domine deus miserere mei
Carry me away
From the dark I fear
When the storm is near
From the endless night
From my blinded sight
To a sky of light

Free me to fly away
Salva me

Carry me away
From the things that harm
On a sea of calm
From the endless night
From my blinded sight
To a sky of light

Or maybe a rendition of Recorderde, in alto, soprano and tenor voices (my typical choir setting ^^)

Miserere, recordare
Miserere nobis
Confutatis, maledictis
Recordare, miserere
Dona eis aetarnam requiem
Recordare, miserere
Deprecationem nostram
Salva, salva me

Would it be an eye opener or will I end up as a complete dud? My kids would have to bear with me on this ^^ especially twisting their tongues to the Latin words.


Anonymous said...

I'm a Libera fan, too. Between the 2 Libera song choices you presented, I'd choose Salva Me. Hope you can upload your choir's performance in Youtube.

Master Mervyn said...

Hi there,
Yes, I'm opting Salva Me for the competition. I really love that song. And yes, I'll post my vid on YouTube ^^ I'll post a link in my blog as soon as it is over and done with ^^