Opening Hearts to Gregorian Chant?
  • Suggestions on very accessible/simple videos or articles explaining Gregorian Chant? I'm especially interested in ways of helping school teachers appreciate Gregorian Chant and to see the positive impact it can have on children's education and prayer. However, any suggestions are welcome.
    Thanked by 1ServiamScores
  • MarkB
    Posts: 878
    Here's a video series produced by Catholic News Service. Note, there are more videos than just the first video that plays. Look at the list on the right side of the screen:

    This is an excellent explanation and historical overview:

    You might find one or more of these helpful, especially Part Four:

    And an article:
  • The kids will have no problem learning it; they are maleable. It’s always the adults that cause the issue. I taught the seasonal Marian antiphons to our school kids four years ago and half the kids had them memorized, and I even had one mother tell me that her kids would sing the salve Regina by wrote while playing together in the back yard. Perhaps that’s one route in: seasonal marian antiphons; you can sing them at the end of all school mass, and then hopefully they will hear them every week (or more).
  • Another idea is to connect people with the idea that these exact chants have been sung for CENTURIES, so when you sing the Salve Regina, you’re singing the same prayer to Mary, in the same way, as Saints so-and-so. Sometimes people are intrigued if they realize that they get to do the exact same thing that their favorite Saint used to do.
  • Assign the children to sing for Maundy Thursday. They'll become convinced that they're doing something important (which they are) and they'll not want to go back to kiddy music for Mass ever again.

    Mind you, if the ars celebrandi in a parish is, shall I say "weak" or "unsupportive" of such a goal, even musicians can't work miracles. So,.... first piece of advice: make sure that the environment into which you introduce chant makes sense.

    I was, once upon a time, giving a conference on "how not to look and feel like a foreigner at the TLM" to a group of newcomers, at their request. One mom asked me, "So, if what you say is correct, why do people hold hands at the Our Father".... to which I replied that there were two possible answers: if you wanted to find out why people weren't following the rubrics, you should ask those people, not someone who knew they shouldn't be behaving that way; and Original Sin.

    Thanked by 1tomjaw
  • If you PM me I'll send you a doc file with many hundreds of youtube comments that I've mined from chant and polyphony videos. Bottom line - many people, both religious and nonreligious, are deeply drawn to this music. The comments speak for themselves, and cannot be simply waved away.
  • Edschola, I would also love to see this document. In fact, I suspect many of us would.
  • Here is the PDF youtube chant and polyphony comments file for anybody interested.