Irish Tune Settings

by Robert O'Dwyer

Arranged for Symphonic Band by Mark E. Maronde

The Lorica (or Breastplate) is a long text that is attributed to St. Patrick. It dates from the fifth century and was originally written in Gaelic. The English text is best known from the poem “I Bind Unto Myself Today” written by C.F. Alexander in 1889. Charles Villiers Stanford, the Irish composer, used this text for his hymn “St. Patrick's Breastplate” in 1902. These words and music appear in several hymnals and are frequently sung for the celebration of the Feast of St. Patrick (March 17) or for Trinity Sunday.

The three Irish tunes used in this arrangement are found in the Gaelic hymnal “Dánta Dé”, printed in Dublin in 1928 at the Sign of the Three Candles. The music editor for this hymnal, Robert O'Dwyer, selected these three Irish tunes to set the text of the Lorica of St. Patrick. Robert O'Dwyer is best known for writing the first full-length opera in Gaelic.

The snare drum part in this arrangement is meant to imitate the Irish drum called the Bodhran (pronounced BOW-rawn).

Mark E. Maronde received a Bachelor of Music degree in music theory and composition from Lawrence University in 1979, where he studied with James Ming and Steven Stucky. He has also pursued graduate work in choral conducting at the Yale Institute of Sacred Music and in music theory at the University of Minnesota. He has worked in the software industry for the past 24 years. Mr. Maronde is active as a composer, arranger, and church musician in the Twin Cities.

Enter Text

Instant Download