Palm Sunday Anthem for SAB voices and Piano by Keith Wilkerson - an anthem from Abingdon Press Choral Club volume 17.1 (Winter - Spring 2007)
Retell the triumphal entry of Jesus in Jerusalem with this praise-filled anthem. A joyous four-measure introduction brings the excitement of the crowd into the story before the first word is sung. Unison voices sing stanzas 1 and 2 back to back. This text identifies “Christ, the long awaited King.” and the shouts of the crowd welcoming the Son of David. The divided refrain includes the familiar “hosannas” associated with Palm Sunday. Unison women followed by unison men sing stanza 3, now focused on Christ’s humility, “sent to conquer, rule, and reign.” The refrain returns and is expanded by the coda offering continued words of praise. Stanza four, set SAB, sings of Christ’s victory over death, come to save us. The anthem concludes with refrain material.
The accompaniment brings energy through the 6/8 meter giving a sense of movement to the anthem. Sixteenth note runs push the excitement forward along with the key change at measure 46. Unisons, repeating melodic patterns, and simple rhythms make this accessible to most three-part mixed ensembles including both youth and adult. The ranges are moderate for all voices.
Performance options include extracting stanza 4 to the end as an introit or closing choral response. The refrain, measure 16 (with pickup) through measure 23 may be used as an introit or closing choral response. The entire anthem may be sung at the opening of worship with children processing with palm branches. This may be sung as a response to the reading of the Palm Sunday scripture.
Appropriate days: Palm Sunday.