Totius inspires chamber choir’s latest work


According to Franco Prinsloo, composer-conductor of the Vox Chamber Choir, “Deurgrond” is a simple setting in which the poet not only asks the Creator to be grounded, but to truly understand them.

This song is a setting of Totius’ original rhyme of Psalm 139, and Prinsloo specifically arranged verses 5 and 12.

“Totius’ Psalm rhymes remain wonderful, lyrical material, and I am grateful for the gift of being able to give one of his rhymes new life with a contemporary setting.”

“Deurgrond”‘s lyrics read:
Thorough, O LORD, and know the black,
hidden depths of my heart;
or deep inside me, where You can read,
may be a harmful way.

And henceforth guide my wobbly strides
on the way of eternal peace.

When I say: “The darkness
cover me before your majesty,”
then the night is a bright light
who discovers me by your face.

For You, Lord, the night is dark
like the day in splendor and glory.
Thorough, O Lord, my heart.

Anja Pollard, a music therapist from Pretoria and member of the choir, says it is the recognizability of shared feelings and experiences that resonates with people who listen to this.

“The message is beautifully summed up in the music and text. ‘You know the black, hidden depths of my heart’, is a confession to God about our human shortcomings, but also a statement full of hope and confidence that man is intimately known and understood by a Creator.

“Thus this composition gives us a shared experience where together we can look the terrifyingness of the world squarely in the eye, and in the same breath experience comfort, encouragement and strengthening.”

“Deurgrond” forms part of Requiem, the Vox Chamber Choir’s new concert program which will give choir lovers the opportunity to be carried away. Ludwig Bouwer of the One Big Room Studios handled the song’s recording and final arrangement.

Listen to “Deurgrond” here: