Relating to Dr. Kwasniewski's article at CCW
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    Peter has written a must-read article that articulates the struggle of how to discern and apply music of beauty and worth to our liturgies over at CCW's VIEW FROM THE CHOIR LOFT.
    It was a pleasure to wake up to it this morning's browsing after last night's rehearsal. Out here on the Left Coast we've encountered a "problem" I've never encountered before! We've been singing local friend (and CCW composer) Royce Nickel's St. Therese Lisieux Mass since MR3 and just before last Advent added JMO's Sherwin Glory.
    But we've been reading and preparing Chris Mueller's Missa Tertione, and last night read Richard Clark's (CCW contributor/CanticaNova) Mass of the Angels. What's the dilemma? They're stunningly beautiful AND accessible to choirs and congregations of even modest sizes and means. I cannot ever remember stumbling across two Mass settings (Mueller/Clark) and NOT knowing which to unveil first in my career. That beautiful are they!
    Add that to the other settings in supply at Penkala/Ostrowski/Jones/Rice sources, and I think we're in a renaissance.
    I'm glad to have lived long enough to outlive the "play it safe" ethos that seems to attend other editorial processes at other publishers. And, just as it is in other aspects of life, you just know there's someone out there somewhere who's been inspired to reach even higher for beauty to serve our worship. Wonderful!
  • RachelR
    Posts: 33
    That piece was timely for me, as it articulated a particular problem I've recently been experiencing. The parish I'm in is about 30 years old. Although I am a relative newcomer, I'm still morally certain that it has never had Sacred Music in its liturgies--only G&P-style songs accompanied by guitars. I wanted to write up a simple piece for the parish, maybe for the bulletin, explaining why we should care about the type and quality of the music at Mass. I tried to back up my argument with reasoning about sacredness, beauty, and universality of the music the Church calls for, but found that this reasoning falls so very flat in the context of my particular audience. The rampant ignorance in the average parish, such as Dr. Kwasniewski's piece discussess, leaves only obedience to the Church as any kind of viable appeal, and I'm probably going to give up on my writing, because that appeal really isn't so viable in the AmChurch these days.
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    Tho' I noticed that this post didn't receive much attention, I thought a few folks might be interested in how our Mass turned out this morning.
    For Introit/Commuio we did chant SEP very well, unrehearsed totally at sight.
    The Mueller was sung (save for the Credo) to all our benefits, it's quite better to sing it than to just hear it. Now I have to pay Chris and make parish handouts. And we did appropriate Richard Clark's Alleluia GA as well. It was great.
    We sang Dufay's AVE REGINA CAELORUM (W/T/B) after Communion. After Communion collect the pastor/celebrant addressed me after announcements and asked me from what period was that piece? I replied between 14/15th century ars nova, and he mentioned to the congregation how wonderful it was to hear those "odd" cadential harmonies, with the double sharps not being "wrong" but intentional. He asked me to explain them briefly to the congregation (so weird!) so I mentioned the Landini cadence as cogently, briefly (like in ten seconds that seemed an hour.) The upshot was that our pastor was appreciative and mentioned how we sing the breadth of our traditon from many centuries here in little ol' Central CA.
    So, at the dismissal we upped the ante by singing Arcadelt AV. Good Mass.
    Thanks to Chris and FNJ.