O Magnum Mysterium, Three Variations
  • Drake
    Posts: 139
    I would like to share a new setting of O Magnum Mysterium that I composed for the women's schola at our parish. The three variations are SA + violin, SAA, and SSAA. The SSAA version requires a very high soprano voice.

    Free PDF (creative commons) and electronic playback are available here: http://www.catholicliving.net/o-magnum-mysterium/

    I hope it may be of use.
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 7,913
    You have done it again, Drake
    Haunting, deeply moving.
    Am I too carried away in comparing it to Victoria's version?
    Did you have Victoria in mind?
    The violin really makes it.
  • Drake
    Posts: 139
    Thank you for the very kind feedback! Indeed, for me the Victoria setting is the archetype O Magnum Mysterium.

    Our full choir has sung the Victoria setting for many years, as well as many other of his motets and Masses. His music has influenced me without question. When I think of O Magnum Mysterium, my first thought is the Victoria. The same is true of O Vos Omnes, and even the requiem Mass.

    Members of my target choir for this piece almost definitely would have heard the Victoria sung at our parish, and some of them would have sung it. So I was hoping to maintain a similar style while writing something new and tailored for that group.
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,620
    All three versions are really fine works. In addition to being musically moving, they are quite sensitive to the text.
    Thanked by 1Drake
  • Heath
    Posts: 876
    Drake, beautiful!....a picardy third at the end would make it even more so. ;)
    Thanked by 1Drake
  • Drake
    Posts: 139
    Thank you, Heath! I usually don't write in a picardy third when the overall piece is minor. This is partially in deference to my wife's preferences, whose perspective is that the picardy third suddenly puts a happy face at the end of a somber or mysterious sounding composition, which can be out of character with the rest of the piece. I don't feel quite as strongly as she does about it, but I do think I prefer an E-minor chord at the end rather than E major--it just feels more mysterious.
  • Heath
    Posts: 876
    Drake, understood! Motets in the stile antico nearly always end with either a major chord or an open fifth (or octave/unison, of course), if I'm not mistaken...but it's your piece! Thanks for sharing!
    Thanked by 1Drake
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,620
    Motets in the stile antico nearly always end with either a major chord or an open fifth (or octave/unison, of course), if I'm not mistaken...
    Hmm, perhaps not stile antico enough? - or too much (ie. too antico)? :

    Gombert: Lugebat Absalon, prima & secunda pars.
    Josquin: Praeter rerum serium, prima & secunda pars.
    - Qui habitat in adjutorio Altissimi, secunda pars.
    - Tulerunt Dominum meum.
    - Mille regretz.
    - Ave Christe immolate, prima & secunda pars.
    - Veni, Sancte Spiritus, secunda pars.
    - In principio erat verbum, prima & secunda pars (non tertia pars).
    - Domine, ne in furore, prima & secunda pars.
    - O bone et dulcissime Jesu, prima & secunda pars.
    - O virgo virginum, secunda pars.
    - De profundis clamavis a 5.
    L'Heritier: Surrexit pastor bonus.
    Mouton: Benedicam Dominum in omni tempore.
    - Ave fuit prima salus, secunda pars.
    Sheppard: Deus tuorum militum.
  • Heath
    Posts: 876
    Hahaha, Chuck, well played! I guess my comment is mostly true in regards to music of the high Renaissance, but I painted with too broad of a brush. I swear I've heard and sang all the rep you listed above, but still inexcusable for me to ignore it.

    Still love me a Picardy third. :)