Opus number: op. 88

Title: Unchanging Love

1. Prelude

2. Offertory

3. Postlude

Instrumentation: Brass Quintet and Organ

Commissioned: The Memorial Church at Harvard University in celebration of its 75th anniversary year 1932/2007.

Length: Fifteen minutes

Date written: 2007

Premiere performance: Cambridge Symphonic Brass Ensemble, September 2007, Memorial Church at Harvard University

Program notes: Unchanging Love, op. 88, for brass quintet and organ, was commissioned in 2007 by Memorial Church at Harvard University to celebrate its 75th anniversary year, 1932–2007. In three movements–Prelude, Offertory, and Postlude–my work was designed for liturgical purposes. Each of the movements is based on a hymn I wrote called “Unchanging Love,” my setting of a text Romulus Linney used in his play Holy Ghosts. (Linney also wrote a play named Unchanging Love.) This hymn, with its text sung, serves as the conclusion of my opera Holy Ghosts, based on Linney’s play.

Reviews: (recording) “Scored for organ and brass quintet, Unchanging Love, Op. 88 (2007), is given a sensitive reading here by the Cambridge Symphonic Brass Ensemble and organist Harrylyn Huff. Bell’s compositional style is suave, personal, inventive, and intriguing. Mildly contemporary harmonies add warmth, color, and zest. The music surrounds the listener with a sense of spirituality and joy. Superbly performed on this disc, Bell’s music possesses a unique beauty that has direct appeal. It is definitely worth hearing.      –The American Organist

Recording:  Cambridge Symphonic Brass Ensemble, Harrylyn Huff, organist and Larry Bell conductor. Larry Bell, Unchanging Love: Brass and Organ Music, Albany Records (Troy 1068)