Favorite Parts of the Ordinary?
  • gregpgregp
    Posts: 632
    On another thread, JulieColl talked about how beautiful the Agnus Dei from Mass VI is. We have been singing for 5 years now, and we have used the Ordinary for Masses I, IV, VIII, IX, XI, and XVII, and we're learning XV to start singing that in September. Even though I know it is not required, we stay with a 'setting' because it's much easier to say, "We are singing Mass XI" than to say, "Kyrie from Mass VIII, Gloria from Mass I", etc.

    If you had a chance to put together a Mass where you could have the parts from any Ordinary chanted, which ones would you pick? Granted that we are not familiar with all 18 settings (although that is a project of mine), for my first choiceI would select:

    Kyrie ad lib. Clemens Rector
    Gloria IX
    Sanctus XI
    Agnus Dei IV

    But there's so many good ones! Another selection:

    Kyrie IV
    Gloria XI
    Sanctus VIII
    Agnus Dei I

    And Credo IV is my favorite Credo, even if it is late and decadent.
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,556
    Sometimes you need a good decadent Credo.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,281
    I like all the Masses that have Roman Numerals in their names.
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,433
    I've never thought about mixing and matching, but it's a great suggestion, and I'll look these combinations up. The possibilities are endless. Thanks!

    To make things easier for our congregation we always sing the Gloria from Mass VIII and Credo III (since we've had some dear old folks request it after we sang a new Gloria one Sunday) and that probably helps provide some continuity for them.

    My favorite Credo is I, but I'll have to look up that decadent Credo IV. Sounds very intriguing.

    P.S. GregP, you'll have to try Masses II, V and VII someday. They are amazing.
    Thanked by 1gregp
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 2,222
    Agnus ad libitum II is lovely, but my favourite Mass is XIII.

    Would it be evil of me to say that I like some of the 'corrupt' settings from the Ratisbon Graduale? Sung mensurally, of course.
    Thanked by 2gregp CHGiffen
  • gregpgregp
    Posts: 632
    To make things easier for our congregation we always sing the Gloria from Mass VIII and Credo III (since we've had some dear old folks request it after we sang a new Gloria one Sunday) and that probably helps provide some continuity for them.


    We have some people in our congregation who felt the same way. I am of the mind, however, that "the treasure of inestimable value" should not and must not be limited to Gloria VIII and Credo III, and therefore we have embarked, with our priest's OK, on a project of eventually singing all 18 of these Masses. At a rate of 3 or 4 per year. That's at least a silver lining to the dismal reality of having almost all knowledge of the Chant eliminated from popular memory - no one can hold their breath and say, "I want the Missa de angelis!"

    I eagerly look forward to learning II, V, VII, and XIII.

    Apropos of not very much, I remember sitting in the workshop that Scott Turkington gave at Arlene and Jeffrey's parish in Auburn in 2005, and after Scott mentioned something about everyone being familiar with the Sanctus from Mass XVIII, he turned and asked, "How many Mass settings do you think there are?", and some wag in the Bass section (why is it always the Basses?), deadpanned, "At least 18."
  • SkirpRSkirpR
    Posts: 853
    ...we have embarked, with our priest's OK, on a project of eventually singing all 18 of these Masses. At a rate of 3 or 4 per year.


    Awesome! Would that we were all so lucky!

    There are actually thousands upon thousands out there in the manuscripts.
    Thanked by 1JulieColl
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,556
    If you want to try a truly decadent Credo, sing Credo VI at an incredibly fast tempo. Then you can a truly exciting overlook of the Catholic faith.
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,433
    You're right, MJM. I just looked it up on Corpus Christi Watershed, and once you start, it just takes off. It must be all those nifty repeating cadences at the end of every phrase. There are at least 21 of these figures:

    image

    By the way, Gregp, I checked out Credo IV also. Very interesting and lively---sounds almost like a folk song: http://www.ccwatershed.org/media/audio/12/07/17/16-36-05_0.mp3

    I've always thought the Kyrie from Mass V (Missa Magnae Deus Potentiae) was a real swinger, too. (My husband likes to jazz it up on his saxophone.)

    http://www.ccwatershed.org/media/audio/12/06/28/16-41-12_0.mp3
    Thanked by 1Gavin
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,556
    yeah, at a real clip Credo VI is crazy wonderful.
  • tomjaw
    Posts: 1,292
    Credo IV is sub titled in one book as 'Cardinalis'. We sing it with Mass XI on the Sundays after Epiphany / Septuagesima / after Pentecost. The PIP seem to like it and some sing along...
    We have also started singing Credo VI, but with female cantors, alternating with the largely male schola, and this seems to be very popular! At least we don't get asked to sing Credo III anymore!
  • Part of my answer to this question is here. I also appreciate those settings of the Sanctus that potentially can move seamlessly from the sung Preface's final la: I*, III, IV, V*, VI*, VII, VIII**, XI**, XIII, XV**, XVI**, XVIII, ad lib. III.

    *maybe
    ** if transposed

    If I'm considering worldly time/ease of use/congregational singing, here are my (current) picks from the Graduale Simplex, many of which are not found in the Graduale Romanum:

    • Kyrie simplex Va
    • Mozarabic Gloria
    • Ambrosian Credo
    • Ambrosian Sanctus or Sanctus XIII
    • Agnus simplex Vb

    Ignoring the above considerations, I would align the movements of the Ordinary to a particular mode. Here's a Mode VIII suite you may never hear for a Mass:

    • Kyrie ad lib IX
    • Gloria ad lib I
    • Sanctus ad lib III
    • Agnus ad lib I
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,281
    • Kyrie simplex Va
    • Mozarabic Gloria
    • Ambrosian Credo
    • Ambrosian Sanctus or Sanctus XIII
    • Agnus simplex Vb


    Is this just your list of individual favorites, or would you also suggest using them together as an entire Mass Setting?
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,281
    (One almost wonders why anyone continues to bother to write new Mass settings, sometimes...)
    Thanked by 1Gavin
  • @Adam: Yes and yes. (And yes…and yet!)
    Thanked by 1Adam Wood
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,433
    I would align the movements of the Ordinary to a particular mode.

    Very interesting, Aristotle. I've often wondered why the different parts of a particular Mass setting were in different modes. So, I take it there are no Mass settings in the Kyriale in which all the parts are in the same mode?

    Another question: what would be the benefit of having all the parts in the same mode? Continuity? Seamlessness?
  • I don't worry that they're not in the same mode. On the other hand, I do try to have the Sanctus start on the same pitch on which Father finishes the preface. Since we're singing Mass XI right now, that's not hard.
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,433
    Thanks for that tip, cgz. I was reading Fr. Adrian Fortescue's notes (on New Liturgical Movement) to his organist friend about how to accompany a Missa Cantata and he advised the same type of thing.

    Are you accompanying the Ordinary or singing acapella? If you're accompanying the Ordinary, how can you know in advance what pitch the preface will end on? Would you have to accompany the Dominus vobiscum dialogue in order to give the priest the correct note to start the preface on? That's the only way I can think of to do it.

    I don't have the necessary skill set to transpose on the spot or improvise an accompaniment. I remember watching my mother pick out the pitch very softly on the organ as the priest was singing and then transpose the accompaniment accordingly but I'm not at that level. (I could do it if you gave me a half an hour to prepare it, but not on the spot.)
  • @JulieColl

    So, I take it there are no Mass settings in the Kyriale in which all the parts are in the same mode?

    Not to my recollection.

    Another question: what would be the benefit of having all the parts in the same mode? Continuity? Seamlessness?

    I don't have an answer to that question outside of "just 'cuz". :¬)

    (Though your proposed answers work for me.)
    Thanked by 1Adam Wood
  • SkirpRSkirpR
    Posts: 853
    Are you accompanying the Ordinary or singing acapella? If you're accompanying the Ordinary, how can you know in advance what pitch the preface will end on? Would you have to accompany the Dominus vobiscum dialogue in order to give the priest the correct note to start the preface on? That's the only way I can think of to do it.

    I don't have the necessary skill set to transpose on the spot or improvise an accompaniment. I remember watching my mother pick out the pitch very softly on the organ as the priest was singing and then transpose the accompaniment accordingly but I'm not at that level. (I could do it if you gave me a half an hour to prepare it, but not on the spot.)


    If your priest is reliable on holding pitch, you could very lightly, almost imperceptably intone the Preface Dialog - or in the OF, he could chant the Prayer Over the Gifts, and you could give him a tone for that. All without overtly accompanying anything.
    Thanked by 1JulieColl
  • hartleymartin
    Posts: 1,447
    Don't discount using the settings of the Kyriale Simplex. Missa Simplex IV is a nice one.
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,433
    Speaking of intoning (at a Missa Cantata) SkirpR, do you have any other helpful tips? Sometimes it's very hard to time things correctly. Every priest has a different routine and the worst feeling is when you've boldly intoned the Credo and there's a long pause before the priest picks it up.

    I always thought the signal was when the priest had returned to the altar and replaced his maniple. Is that correct?
  • I always thought the signal was when the priest had returned to the altar and replaced his maniple. Is that correct?


    Correct, according to Fortescue's wonderful four-page handwritten synopsis of timings and other hints and tips for organists, available here.
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • JulieCollJulieColl
    Posts: 2,433
    Thank you for the link to Fortescue's notes! This is an invaluable resource and something to strive for and makes the Missa Cantata truly a musical work of art.

    In the first volume of Fr. Rossini's Liturgical Organist there are many examples of modulations and also cadences for the various modes, and I didn't fully realize how they could be used at Mass, but this dovetails with Fr. Fortescue's paradigm, I would imagine.
  • Thank you for the link to Fortescue's notes! This is an invaluable resource and something to strive for and makes the Missa Cantata truly a musical work of art.

    Don't miss the rest of the photos (I wish the whole book could be scanned or photographed) from Fortescue's Liber Organi.
  • Bump. Question was posed: If you had a chance to put together a Mass where you could have the parts from any Ordinary chanted, which ones would you pick?

    My answer:
    Kyrie Clemens Rector
    Gloria IV
    Sanctus Ad Libitum III
    Agnus Dei VI
  • Credo IV is the one "weird" (non-I/III) Credo we do. I'll have to give VI some serious consideration, since it's about time for a new one.
  • Julie,

    I had forgotten about this conversation, so I'm sorry I haven't answered your question yet.

    a) I have been blessed with a series of musical clerics. They don't get everything right all the time, but they're remarkably consistent.

    b) I would strenuously oppose accompanying the Sursum Corda. Congregations don't need the extra voice, clerics don't need the subtle jab, and I don't need the headache of trying to time an entry.

    c) I think that we were singing Mass IX accompanied at the time I wrote that post, but there has been much dihydrous monoxide under that translateral conveyance.... and I still pursue the same ideas, whenever possible. If one can't get an exact pitch (for example, if the celebrant sings "in the cracks") the thing to do is to avoid all possible jarring. It's supposed to be the continuation of a conversation "sine fine dicentes Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus, Dominus Deus Sabbaoth."
  • tomjaw
    Posts: 1,292
    @Jeffrey Quick

    Credo VI is great, we get the women to alternate with the men. As it can be repetitive.
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • It might be easier to identify the ones that are least favorite since so many of the ordinary chants have their own characteristics that fit in different circumstances. If I were scheduling for a Mass that I was personally connected to, it would be very hard to select the specific chant for each section. Setting aside appeal of individual movements, there can also be something said for a setting with at least some sense of continuity throughout.

    But as a purely theoretical exercise, my top 2 for each movement:
    • Kyrie - Mass VI ... Ad Lib Kyrie 2 (Summe Deus)
    • Gloria - Mass XIII ... Ad Lib Gloria 3 (this movement is probably the hardest for me to only select 2 settings!)
    • Credo - Credo VI ... Credo IV
    • Sanctus - Mass II ... Mass VIII
    • Agnus Dei - Mass IV ... Mass IX
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • mahrt
    Posts: 502
    The strange thing about Credo IV is that in its original form it was mensural (q=quarter, e=eighth):
    q q q e e q-e-e q
    Pa-trem om-ni-po-ten- tem etc.
  • NihilNominis
    Posts: 319
    Here's a recording of a mensural Credo IV.

    https://soundcloud.com/seanconnolly/credo-take-4-9-6-15

    1896 Graduale Romanum.*

    As an added bonus, Incardination is in this recording.