Saint-Saëns, Camille – Psalm 150, Op. 127 for large chorus, organ & orchestra (Piano reduction with English text)
Before the era of air travel, there was probably no composer who travelled as widely or as extensively as Camille Saint-Saëns. He traversed the globe making 179 trips to no less than 27 countries. With an abiding fascination in both railways and steam ships, as well as his exceptional gifts as a linguist, he was better equipped than most to deal with the inevitable issues involved in foreign travel in the age before the advent of mass global tourism, but even he had his problems. Both of his trips to the USA were beset by the kind of issues which would have deterred a lesser person.
His second trip to the USA was undertaken in the midst of the First World War, when commercial and passenger trans-Atlantic shipping was being specifically targeted by German U-boats. He crossed the Atlantic from Bordeaux to New York on the steam ship Rochambeau, and while he was clearly thrilled at the idea of seeing at first-hand the innovative turbine power which drove the Rochambeau, it must nevertheless have been a pretty terrifying journey for all the passengers and crew, and not least for the 80-year-old Saint-Saëns. With war raging in Europe, leading politicians and dignitaries had other things on their mind than to attend the Panama-Pacific Exposition being held in 1915 in San Francisco as part of the celebrations to mark the opening of the Panama Canal….
Read the preface of the full score > HERE