Bernard Wayne Sanders (b. 1957) — Dirges in the Dark (2007) for organ
1) Dirge No. 1
2) Dirge No. 2
3) Dirge No. 3
Bernard Wayne Sanders (b. 1957) was born in DePere, Wisconsin and was educated at St. Norbert College, Wichita State University, and the Hochschule für Musik in Hamburg, Germany. Sanders has been an active church musician now for many years in Germany, currently serving parishes in Tuttlingen. As a composer, he has published many works and composed the award-winning piece “Ornament of Grace,” sponsored by the American Guild of Organists as part of a performance by organists worldwide in 2008.
This beautiful yet enigmatic work is a set of three “dirges” with varying character, but all exploring a nocturnal mood. The title (but not the music) comes from the No. 1 hit tune “American Pie” released in 1971 on the album with the same name by Don McLean. The complete line is: “and we sang dirges in the dark the day the music died.”