Hymn to the Mother of Light – Unterseher

SATB divisi, unaccompanied, optional organ

While originally concieved for a Christmas Eve Lessons and Carols service, this is appropriate for more general use. it is a mystical meditation on the nature of light and existence.

Purchase HYMN TO THE MOTHER OF LIGHT from Reg’s web site


Mystical images of the beginning of the universe have long focussed on light, even when the idea of “the Big Bang” would have had no frame of reference. This piece is a meditation on the mystical nature of light and existence. It was originally sung as part of a Christmas Eve Lessons and Carols, as the “Mary” carol. In some ways, it functions as an extension of the “O” antiphons.


Single arch shapes are the structural center of this piece. The color of the sound goes from dark to light back to dark. The length of the lines, dynamics, tempo, in every aspect, look for that progression.

Unaccompanied is preferred, but the organ can supply a sustained support if needed. An organ score (organ notes full size, score laid out in landscape mode) is available.


by Sheila Dunlop and Reginald Unterseher

O Mother
Womb of the unbroken life
Lens of the new-formed sun
Speaker of the word, the endless word
Mirror of the eternal light
O Mother

This entry was posted in Choral, Christmas, Moderate, Sacred, SATB a capella, SATB accompanied and tagged by Reginald Unterseher. Bookmark the permalink.

About Reginald Unterseher

Reginald Unterseher is Music Director and Composer-in-Residence at Shalom United Church of Christ, Richland, Washington. His works are published by Oxford University Press, Walton Music, and through NW Choral Publishing at www.reginaldunterseher.com. He is the Washington State Music Teacher’s Association’s “Composer of the Year” for 2013. Mr. Unterseher’s compositions are regularly performed throughout the world and have been featured at ACDA and MENC conventions in the US as well as at Carnegie Hall in New York City. He currently serves as Repertoire & Standards Chair for Men’s Choirs for the Northwest Division of the American Choral Director’s Association, and is in demand as a choral and vocal adjudicator and clinician. Mr. Untereseher is a past Artistic Director of Consort Columbia (now Mid-Columbia Mastersingers), founder and past Chorus Master of Washington East Opera, and an active member of Male Ensemble Northwest.