June 8th, 2018

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Celtic Mass for the Sea

“Celtic Mass for the Sea”, is a choral work written by Nova Scotia (Canada) composer Scott Macmillan and Nova Scotia librettist Jennyfer Brickenden.  This work will be performed on World Oceans Day. 

The text, the composition and the musical forces are all amazing and this is the 30th anniversary of the composition.  The text was compiled by Jennyfer Brickenden.  She turns to the early Celtic oral incantations, rituals and prayers, such as theCarmina Gadelica for some of the inspiration from the ancient lore of the ocean.  These ancient texts are blended with another set of ancient texts, the Christian Mass (Kyrie, Gloria etc.)

The music themes come from or are inspired by traditional Celtic music – rowing songs, funeral chants, sea-rapture songs, pipe and fiddle tunes, and labour songs.  These traditional tunes are interwoven with Scott Macmillan’s original themes.

A chamber orchestra will accompany the choral singing, including a twist - a string quartet combined with a Celtic band!  

There will be two additional features to the concert – a number of local and provincial water organizations will be on hand to raise awareness and we will display Alberta photographer Peter Holmes “Water portraits” series as well.

As it says in the forward of the score: “More than at any other time in human history we need to learn from this long ago vision (of the Celts).  Our oceans are depleted, our planet in crisis; it is our belief that only through empowerment of the human spirit will we find the collective will to make the sacrifices needed to restore balance and harmony to our global home.”



- Youth Focused


Organization Name
United Voices of Edmonton
Organization Type
Other Church
Member of Aquarium Conservation Partnership (ACP)
Participant in AZA's SAFE Campaign


As part of our celebration, we plan to do the following:
  • Event is open to the public
  • Media would be welcome
  • Event will include some special activities or engagements for youth and/or young adults
    Under 12,Ages 12-18,College/University Age
    A visual display of Alberta photographer Peter Holmes "Water Portrait" series. Also, booths with displays and educational materials and things to give away.
  • Event will be highlighting organization's own efforts to reduce use of plastic


Robertson-Wesley United Church (10209-123 Street, Edmonton)
10209-123 Street
Edmonton, Alberta T5N 1N3 Canada
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