I: The Tyger

for SATB with piano and optional percussion

Never did I think a piece of music could have a heartbeat of its own, until I created this composition. I have always been a fan of epic cinematic music, and it has always been goals of mine to one day write such a work. When Herb Berendsen, conductor of the Oshkosh West High School Chorale, contacted me to write a piece about an animal, I knew that this was my opportunity to fulfill that dream.

Immediately I went on a hunt for the perfect text and came across the poem, The Tyger, written by William Blake. After reading this text, my mind went to the deepest and darkest pits of middle earth. Instantly, sounds of forging steel, chains, fire and percussion began to flood my mind as I conceived the thought of this animal being forged. After this, imagery of the dark, damp and dreary location that this animal was created entered my imagination. One exciting concept led to the next, and before I knew it, the tyger had come to life through my music.

Although I know this composition is not really a living and breathing entity, it is hard to believe that such an animal does exist. Where could a creature with such strength, elegance and poise come from? Who could conceive such a thought as the tyger? “Did he who made the lamb make thee?"

-Zachary J. Moore



Song: The Tyger
Ensemble: Oshkosh West High School
Conductor: Herb Berendsen  

Purchase Music

Available for SATB with piano and optional percussion
Purchase music through MusicSpoke - Sheet Music


The Tyger

Tyger Tyger, burning bright
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry
In what distant deeps or skies.
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand, dare seize the fire?
And what shoulder, & what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?
What the hammer? what the chain,
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp,
Dare its deadly terrors clasp!
When the stars threw down their spears
And water'd heaven with their tears:
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

-William Blake

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