Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Yet more examples

The internet is awash with examples of the new English translation of the Roman Missal, the full implementation of which is nigh.  Once more, then, let one remind one's self of what the English-speaking Church used for nearly 40 years, and what it will be using henceforth: the Collect from the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary time this year: 
Almighty God,
every good thing comes from you. 
Fill our hearts with love for you,
increase our faith,
and by your constant care
protect the good you have given us. 
And from next year:  
God of might, giver of every good gift,
put into our hearts the love of your name,
so that, by deepening our sense of reverence,
you may nurture in us what is good
and, by your watchful care,
keep safe what you have nurtured. 

Exciting times ...

... as England and Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Canada and the US prepare to start the implementation of the Roman Missal, Third Typcial Edition, joining Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa.  And here is a new article from the Catholic press which rings true (and supports anecdotal evidence filtering through from Australia) regarding the success of the implementation so far in the last mentioned countries.  

A full list of past news articles about the new translation may be found here

Another hope shared by many

A priest opines in the Catholic Herald (UK) that there ought to be a greater prevalence of sung Masses (to which the Roman Rite naturally lends itself).  Bear in mind that this is not an article as such and that some of the statements he makes are based more on his intuition than solid research.  I think it is an honest, frank and realistic portrayal of the current state of affairs.

I should also like to take this opportuinity to refer readers once again to a televised example of a Mass which comes very close to the ideal sung Vatican II Mass.  The video was made in June of an Episcopal ordination at St Patrick's RC Cathedral in Melbourne.  Furthermore, it uses many of the new sung dialogues from the Roman Missal, Third Typical Edition (as well as Gloria XV and Sanctus XVIII in English, and the new translation of the Nicene Creed which was said).  Those predisposed to Mozart's music will also approve of the setting of the Kyrie and Agnus Dei - from his Spatzenmesse, K220.  On the eve of the implementation of various sung parts of the new translation of the Order of Mass in England and Wales, Scotland, Ireland and Canada this may make timely viewing.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

A Bit Late But ...

... This is why, in addition to satisfying one's obligation on the Feast of the Assumption by attending Mass, one should attend the First Vespers on Assumption Eve:  
video

(And of course one should attend Second Vespers too - which, like First Vespers, shall be sung, according to the Ordo Cantus Officii)

Thursday, 25 August 2011

More on the Canadian Missal - Sample Pages

Sample pages have been available for some time now of the Missals for use in Australia, England and Wales, Scotland and the United States.  Canada and Ireland lagged behind.  However, Canada has now issued several pages for use during Advent, which will be of significant interest to Canadian priests and lay faithful.

Putting to one side issues of artwork (there is no artwork in the sample pages on which to base an opinion), and subject to the colour of the rubrics (they appear pink in the pdf, but may look different when printed), the layout seems dignified and well planned. 

Canadians Must Use Canadian Missal

As I had anticpated, parishes in Canada, like those Australia, England and Wales and Scotland (and probably Ireland too) will be required to use on the altar only those Missals approved by the local Bishops conference.  This position was clarified in a press release from the Canadian Bishops' Conference.  See here for a full list of the Missals for use in the different English-speaking juridictions.

Canadian Missal

Of visions and revisions

The decades long wait for a new English translation of the Missal is almost over.  For the 21st Sunday in Ordinary time this year the Collect read: 
"Father,
help us to seek the values
that will bring us lasting joy
in this changing world. 
In our desire for what you promise
make us one in mind and heart."
From next year it will read:
"O God, who cause the minds of the faithful
to unite in a single purpose,
grant your people to love what you command
and to desire what you promise,
that, amid the uncertainties of this world,
our hearts may be fixed on that place
where true gladness is found."

Ecumenical Evensong - Update

This post is by way of update to an earlier post Ecumenical Evensong - More Victoria at (Another) St James.  The service included settings by Victoria of the Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis, videos of which have now surfaced on Youtube.  The service was held at the Anglican Church of St. James, King Street, and was sung jointly with the choir of St Mary's RC Cathedral. 
Magnificat
Nunc Dimittis

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

A Ray of Sol

When browsing recently in one of Madrid's best shopping districts - Sol - I came across a series of recordings (ten in total) of Victoria's music commissioned by a Spanish organisation and released on one of the major classical record labels (see here and here and here).  The group of singers is called Ensemble Plus Ultra, whose director is Michael Noone (as the name suggests, the group is English).  A series of video extracts of the choir singing Victoria is available on their website.  For example:

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Fifth Avenue to be Renamed

New York, Tuesday 23 August 2011

It was today announced that Fifth Avenue – one of the most recognisable street names in the world – will from next year be called Dan Schutte Avenue.  The news comes just two days after a hymn written by Schutte – an American Catholic music composer – was sung at the Final Mass of World Youth Day in Madrid celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI.  A spokesperson for the Mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg (not himself a Catholic) said that the street will be renamed in honour of the composer in much the same way that other countries recognise their great artists.  The spokesperson gave the example – in Madrid, the host city of WYD – of Calle del Maestro Victoria (pictured below), a reference to the Spanish Renaissance polyphonist considered by many as the greatest composer of Catholic music ever to have lived, with the possible exception of the Italian maestro Palestrina.  

Yet, unlike Schutte, the music of T. L. de Victoria, the 400th anniversary of whose death is celebrated this very year, was not featured in the Final Mass of World Youth Day.  Unconfirmed reports suggest that one WYD official defended the use of Schutte’s music saying that it was ‘specially suited’ to the Roman Rite.  According to a source close to the event, another official, exercising a greater degree of circumspection, likened Schutte’s music to American fast food which is now ubiquitous outside the country of origin – known to be of questionable benefit but readily consumed nevertheless.  Yet another official, when asked why Victoria’s music was not sung at the Mass despite him being perhaps the finest composer of Catholic music Spain has ever produced, and it being the anniversary of his death, and Madrid (the host city of WYD) being the capital of Spain (and a place where the maestro wrote much of his music), is reputed to have said “Que?” (It is not known whether the official hailed from Barcelona).   

When contacted for comment, an official official, on condition of anonymity, said that there was no cause for complaint as other cities, such as Sydney and London, had adequately covered the anniversary of Victoria’s death with Masses and music concerts and that those disappointed at the dearth of Victoria’s music at WYD in Spain should simply make plans to travel to these other countries for satisfaction.  (He then also mentioned that another reason Victoria’s music was not sung was that the Mass was not a concert and any resemblance that the WYD Final Mass bore to one was simply coincidental.  He then also murmured something about active participation by the faithful but failed to expatiate on the point when pressed).  

It is not known what reaction there will be from New Yorkers and from others to the news that Fifth Avenue is imminently to be renamed.   

2011 TIC Media and agencies.  

Maestro Victoria Street, Madrid (sign c. 1941)
* Date of birth and death now known to be 1548 and 1611 respectively

Monday, 22 August 2011

World Youth Day 2011 - Sunday Mass

The Vatican (?!) has uploaded to youtube the full video of the Mass:
Particularly noteworthy is the Gloria: 
I was reminded, when listening to said Gloria, of another setting in Latin, equally festive in tone:
The former, however, seems better suited to the context in which it was sung.
Also listen out for the peculiarly Spanish pronunciation of the word gratias (sung as gracias, with a 'th' sound) - and also deprecationem. 
The version sung at the WYD Final Mass is altogether to be preferred to this one:
Incidentally, one of the three composers who wrote the WYD Mass setting is called Guerrero. 
And here is the Sanctus: 
For the sake of comparison, here is setting by Portuguese composer João Domingos Bomtempo (1775-1842) from his Requiem in C minor:

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Update to Blog Page

My blog page on Publishers of the Roman Missal, Third Typical Edition, has been updated to take into account the developments with the Canadian version of the Missal.  I have also added another video from the CTS about their Chapel Edition, suitable for use at the chair. 

Leeding by Example (It Had to be Done)

His Lordship Arthur Roche, bishop of Leeds, speaks about the new translation of the Roman Missal in an interview conducted by (one thinks) a representative of the Catholic Communications Network of England & Wales (10 mins long).  As chairman (nota bene interviewer - the bishop is clearly of that sex and to my knowledge has not taken on the form of a piece of furniture) of ICEL he is more hopeful than most that the new translation will yield the promised harvest.

When asked about whether the introduction of the newly translated Missal would result in more sung Masses, His Lordship was optimistic.  The newly translated Missal with its excellent offering of chants and vastly improved layout is unquestionably a necessary step in the process of moving towards more sung Masses. 

His Lordship also alludes to paragraph 8 of Sacrosanctum Concilium when he states that the celebration of Holy Mass should be a foretaste of heaven. 

Finally, the bishop states his desire that parishes in the diocese of Leeds introduce the Missal chants of the Ordinary during the period of September to November this year.

Bishop Arthur Roche, prelate of the diocese of Leeds

Ecumenical Evensong - Round 2

The choirs of the Anglican Church of St James, King Steet, and the RC Cathedral of St Mary, are this Sunday (14 August) at 5 pm o'clock to sing the First Vespers for the Assumption of the BVM at the aforementioned cathedral.  The men of the Cathedral Choir (and for the major feasts, as would appear to be the case in this instance, the Full Choir) sing Solemn Choral Vespers & Benediction at 5 pm almost every Sunday, with the whole service being in Latin except for the Scripture Reading, the intercessions and the Lord's Prayer.

The order of service has not been released, but as the Vespers is part of the Sydney Victoria Festival, celebrating the 400th anniversary of that composer's death, it is a fair bet that his music will pervade the service. 

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Ecumenical Evensong - More Victoria at (Another) St James

On the same day that I posted information about the celebration of Victoria's music at St James Spanish Place Evensong was being celebrated at another St James - in the Antipodes.  St James, King Street, is situated in Sydney's CBD, contiguous to Queens's Square and in the shadows of St Mary's RC Cathedral, and at 3pm o'clock the service of choral Evensong commenced, sung jointly by the Choir of St James and the Choir of said cathedral.  The Order of Service comprised Victoria's Magnificat primi toni & Nunc Dimittis tertii toni, and Let All the World & Te Deum in G by Vaughan Williams.  The hymn Tristes erant Apostoli was also sung. 

The Choir of St James, King Street, has made a recording of Victoria's Missa Ascendens Christus, and is available for purchase from their website.  They have made the recording of the Mass available on youtube, and extract of which follows:  


More extracts appear on their youtube site.  King Street is also known for its orchestral Masses in January and February, almost always including a sumptuous setting by F. J. Haydn, and well worth further investigation if you happen to be in Sydney around that time of the year.