O Vos Omnes

O Vos Omnes

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“O Vos Omnes” comes from the depth of sorrow.  “O Vos Omnes” defines that period of time existing before one can move forward. “O Vos Omnes” mourns.

 Composer: Michael Bussewitz-Quarm (ASCAP)
  • SSAATTBB Chorus and Organ
  • Alto Soloist range: G3-Ab4
  • Orchestra score soon to be available
  • Ranges of SSAATTBB Chorus: S1/S2 :D4-G5; A1: Ab3-Eb5; A2: F3-D5
  • Ranges of SSAATTBB Chorus: T1: F3-G4; T2: C3-G4; B1: G2-Eb4; B2: G2-D4
  • Total duration: ca 6:20
  • Written in 2010
  • One movement work. 15 pages, 8.5 X 11”
  • Premiered in March, 2010 in New York, NY by the Gregg Smith Singers at Saint Peter’s Church
  • Wholesale Pricing: $2.85
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“O Vos Omnes” came into being as a result of the 9/11 tragedy in New York City. For some time following the event I was unable to express in music the deep sense of loss and profound sense of emptiness I felt in the days, weeks and months following 9/11.

Then, three years later, the Dies Magna Requiem (Day of Great Magnitude) started to take shape. It started as a work in commemoration of the tragic loss of so many of our first responders on 9/11. Taken as a whole, the cycle is intended as a pathway leading out of despair and towards healing. However, in its earliest days, The Dies Magna Requiem could only call out a deep dispondency. These were the days when “O Vos Omnes” was born.

“O Vos Omnes” is my response to one gripping scene of the 9/11 attacks. It is a while after the Twin Towers have fallen. Emergency sirens are falling silent. The oxygen tanks of lost firefighters are running out. “O Vos Omnes” marks the moment when the depth of sorrow grips the survivor. The profound reality of tragedy reveals itself and can be seen, heard and touched. Yet there is nothing to be done. “O Vos Omnes” occupies that space which exists before one can move forward. It both grieves and mourns.

It was during a series of workshops in 2006 with Gregg Smith and The Gregg Smith Singers that I began tailoring the song “O Vos Omnes”.  In January 2010, the Gregg Smith Singers premiered “O Vos Omnes” in a concert at St. Peter’s Church in Manhattan.

O vos omnes qui transitis per viam, attendite et videte:

Si est dolor similis sicut dolor meus.

 O all you who walk by on the road, pay attention and see:

if there be any sorrow like my sorrow.


View a Sample Score