Vivace Youth Chorus of San Jose Alumnus Premiers Song at 10th Anniversary Concert


As an audience member at Vivace’s tour

concert in June, 2012, Kenyon Duncan decided

to write a piece of music for the chorus.

When his mom and brother took off for

the tour he was free to follow where his

inspiration lead. Within four hours

Kenyon had his text and main theme and

was determined not to let this become one

of his unfinished works. He persisted even

when he lost the use of his piano and had

to rely on his computer to keep writing.

At one point, the writing stopped coming

as easily. But Kenyon found that while

having to rely more on his inner ear and

do without the piano challenged him, it

also helped him to move beyond some of

his favored and well-practiced harmonic

structures. By the end of the week the

piece was nearly done.

Kenyon does not credit himself as much

of a lyricist but says it was natural to turn

to the Bible for inspiration. In Psalm 116

he found all that he needed. Its emphasis

on voice, breath, and the need to be heard

were natural cues that suggested some

of the structure and counterpoint of the

work. Kenyon has created a piece that

synthesizes his experience as a singer and

pianist. This piece was a real

highlight of our 10th year concert.

-Barbara Maloney

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