Peter (Petrus) was a Galilean fisherman and the brother of Andrew. Early on, Peter had many seemingly contradicting tendencies – fickle one day, while fiercely committed the next; afraid of being accused as a religious zealot, but willing to sacrifice his life for his values; gentle but tempestuous; quick to anger, but infinite in his forgiveness of others. In all of this, was his incredible ability to lead people – perhaps because he was not perfect, but a human being with common flaws, and someone that could relate to the masses. Peter rose above these “flaws” to become the “first Pope,” and push forward a cause/faith that remains strong two millenniums later.
This work is a musical reflection of the character of Peter. It is not intended to be “religious, “ per se, but a study of the various “sides” of Peter’s personality. In the opening, a haunting, inner voice (his conscience) is calling, “Petrus.” Then, as if a storm suddenly came up on the Sea of Galilee, his personality (music) becomes tempestuous. This is followed by a moment of reflection where the inner voice (tenor/bass chorus) returns, and says, “Feed my lambs, tend my sheep,….” There is a sense of urgency that ensues as his commitment grows and culminates into an outburst of emotion – “Alleluia!”