Thanks to my colleagues at Cantate Deo (gentlemen, do remember that revenge is a dish that is best served cold), I have been struck full force with a “meme,” that is, one of those silly answer-these-questions things that tend to pop up on the blogs of people who know each other. I would not normally post such a thing in this venue, but since the questions deal with liturgical music, and some of them even with chant, I’ll be gracious and answer it.
1. Your favorite Mass Ordinary settings (i.e. Kyrie, Sanctus, Agnus Dei):
English: Proulx, A Community Mass. Quite singable, musically interesting, and it works equally well a cappella or with instruments.
Chant: Kyrie II, Gloria II, Credo I, Sanctus VIII, Agnus Dei VIII.
Big-Name: Palestrina Missa papae Marcelli, Biber Missa Christi resurgentis, Bach B Minor, Haydn Nelson, Beethoven Missa solemnis. I also really wish Brahms had written more of his Missa canonica.
2. Your favorite Mass Proper chants (i.e. Introit, Gradual, Tract, Alleluia, Offertory, Communion):
Well, that’s the obvious thing to ask the director of a chant choir….
- Introit: Puer natus est nobis (Christmas Day)
- Gradual: Haec dies (Easter Octave), Viderunt omnes (Christmas Day), Ecce quam bonum (29 OT)
- Tract: Deus, Deus meus (Palm Sunday)
- Alleluia: Pascha nostrum (Easter Sunday)
- Offertory: Stetit angelus (Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael)
- Communion: Ecce virgo concipiet (4th Advent)
3. Your favorite motets (polyphonic vocal work):
The pack is led by Tallis’ Spem in alium. Anything in 40 parts has to be good. I’m also fond of the Mouton Nesciens mater, the Victoria Tenebrae Responsories, and, though they are more madrigals than motets, Palestrina’s Canticum canticorum settings. And there are others, too many to list here.
4. Your favorite Hymn:
PICARDY is not my favorite tune, although “Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence” is my favorite hymn text. For favorite tunes I’m going to have to hit up NUN KOMM DER HEIDEN HEILAND, WINCHESTER OLD (“While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks”), OLD HUNDREDTH, and IN DIR IST FREUDE.
5. Your favorite Marian piece:
Rachmaninov All-Night Vigil, movement 6 (“Bogoroditsye Dyevo”).
6. Your favorite Liturgical Season for music:
I’m about split between Holy Week/Easter Octave and Christmas.
7. Favorite composer of sacred music:
If I may be permitted three: Palestrina, Bach, Rachmaninov.
8. Make up a question for all future posters to answer, and answer it!
I’ll answer the two previous questions, but since I’m not tagging anyone, I won’t make up one of my own.
Worst church music annoyance:
The improper use of microphones.
If you could join any performing ensemble in the world, which would it be?
The Monteverdi Choir. Jiggy’s Bach style has grown on me over the years, and I love some of the Bach Cantata Pilgrimage work.