Crossing The Bar – Resource Pack

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This is Craig’s specially commissioned piece to support the RNLI’s bicentenary celebrations in 2024.  It will be available as a free download from ChoirCommunity for the duration of the year’s celebrations!

Tennyson wrote this poem in 1889, while crossing the Solent from Aldworth to Farringford on the Isle of Wight, apparently while recovering from a serious illness. The extended metaphor he uses really spoke to me about how close we are to death whenever we are on the sea, and how extraordinarily brave anyone is who risks their own lives while trying to save others. Tennyson asked his son Hallam to put “Crossing the Bar” At the end of every collection of his poems.

It is even more poignant for me as it felt very fitting to dedicate this to my brother Tom, who died earlier this year from pancreatic cancer.

It’s a calm 4 part piece in homophonic style with a few harmonic twists, and might work as a short poignant encore after a bigger song.

In order to download the resource pack, you just need to register an account with us (which is also completely free and only takes a few minutes).

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  • Pure emotion

    This was perfect as the closing piece for our “Sing to Save Lives” concert, inviting the audience to turn their thoughts to all the brave lifeboat crews who have served over the past 200 years
    We will be visiting choir at Ely Cathedral in the summer and look forward to performing it again there.

  • Beautiful.

    I lost my brother too young at 57 to pancreatic cancer. I will think of both brothers when my wee street choir sing it. The piece has just enough difficulty for us 15 neighbours. Thanks to you and the RNLI.
    Kate McNab

  • Sublime

    This piece has a quiet beauty and a reflective feel. Gorgeous chords which suit the text perfectly. Full of interest but accessible to choirs who might not be used to singing more ‘choral’ pieces as it’s less than 2 1/2 mins.

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