Instrumentation SATB choir and obbligato solo violoncello (or Bb bass clarinet)

Timing ca. 4′

Composed 2001

Poem by Carol Burdick

Commissioned by the Alfred Chamber Singers in honour of Carol Burdick

World Premiere April 6, 2002, St. Jude’s Catholic Church, Alfred, New York. Alfred Chamber Singers; Rintaro Wada, violoncello; Luanne Crosby, conductor

Recorded by the Canadian Chamber Choir on In Good Company

Recognition Western Canadian Music Awards nomination, Classical Composition of the Year 2011

Performance Note Angeline on Ossabaw may be performed as a stand-alone piece or as part of the trilogy Three Songs for CB

Programme Notes

Carol Burdick’s poem Angeline on Ossabaw depicts, for me, a perfect moment of innocence. Young Angeline dances on the beach, without a care in the world. The older women who watch her have danced in their own earlier time, and they know from their own experience that Angeline’s innocence will not last forever — for pain, sadness, and shadow will always be waiting for her.

This setting for choir and cello seeks to capture that perfect moment. The choir itself ebbs and flows like the tide against the sand, while the solo cello represents Angeline herself, dancing in her own perfect world, exploring and inquisitive, untouched by the shadow ahead of her.


For Ryan’s Angeline on Ossabaw, with its sensitive cello accompaniment, the [Canadian] Chamber Choir stayed the course. It was a beautiful performance. Ryan is an accomplished composer whose music would be equally at home in a traditional classical music setting. (Andrew Thompson/Winnipeg Free Press)

Angeline on Ossabaw is singularly impressive, with sensitive choral writing and a lovely solo cello part.… (David Gordon Duke/Vancouver Sun)

…very evidently the work of an experienced choral composer who knows how to achieve beautiful vocal sounds from a choral group. Playful, yet hauntingly filled with sentiment, this was a much-enjoyed work in the program. (Kenneth DeLong/Calgary Herald)

PDF perusal score

Angeline On Ossabaw perusal


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