Stephen Cabell


Stephen Cabell (b. 1984) is a New York-based composer of sonically engaging and arrestingly wrought music that attempts to grab the listener from the very first moments and never lets go. His artistic mission is to write music that can be understood and appreciated by both casual and expert listeners.

The Judas Kiss

  • Instrumentation: 4 horns, 4 trumpets, 4 trombones, 2 tubas, 2 percussion
  • Duration: 7 minutes
  • Completed: 2007


Commissioned by Blair Bolinger for an all-Bach concert with the Curtis Brass Ensemble, THE JUDAS KISS draws upon two moments from the Saint Matthew Passion by J.S. Bach: the chorale O Haupt voll Blut und Wunden and the final recitative of Jesus, when he beseeches his Father “Lord, why have you forsaken me?” These two fragments appear combined in the opening of the work and develop to the point of distortion as the piece continues. 

My goal was to explore betrayal, not only on a personal, relational level but the betrayal one might feel when the reality of the world becomes known to them--the point between naivety and cynicism; refracted through the experience of Jesus.

-Stephen Cabell

© Copyright 2018 Stephen Cabell