Need SIMPLE choral music for Lent/Holy Week/Easter
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 9,618
    Hi All:

    I am building a music library from scratch. The schola is set for Lent/Holy Week/Easter, but the choir needs pieces (either SA, SAB, or SATB) that they can learn and polish between now and then. Everything from Ash Wednesday through the Easter Season. What do you all recommend? (I would like to download everything for free if possible.)

    Please point the way (with links!)

    Thanks in advance.
  • dvalerio
    Posts: 341
    Let me recommend you this Popule meus (a.k.a. Improperia) by Tomas Luis de Victoria for Good Friday. (Not all the PDFs are equally good...) The 4-voice parts are very simple but beautiful. You'll need a soloist (or more, if you're lucky!) for the Gregorian Chant parts, that alternate with the polyphony. (If you have problems, just sing only the second half of the Improperia leaving the first half aside. Both the polyphony and the chant are easier for the second half. See p. 311 of the Gregorian Missal for the Gregorian Chant.)
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 9,618
    Thanks, dvalerio... this is a good start. I also was looking through my hymnals, and the St. Pius X has a number of motets in three and four parts.

    Here is one:
  • miacoyne
    Posts: 1,805
    francis, how about this one, by Dubois, simple, but beautiful. It's in St. Gregory Hymnal. too.
  • Great ideas so far. Here are some others (some a little more difficult than what was suggested above). All are SATB unless otherwise noted:

    Adoramus Te, Christe – Clemens

    Ave, Regina Caelorum – Soriano (traditional Marian antiphon for Lent)

    Christus Factus Est – F. Anerio

    Crux fidelis – F. Anerio

    O bone Jesu – Ingegneri (attr. Palestrina)

    O crux ave – Palestrina

    O vos omnes – Croce

    Parce, Domine – Obrecht (SAB)

    Tenebrae factae sunt – Ingegneri

    Tristis est anima mea – Ingegneri

    Vere languores – Victoria

    Angelus autem Domini – F. Anerio

    Regina Caeli - Aichinger

    Regina Caeli - Lotti

    Sam Schmitt
  • Here is a simple setting of Crux Fidelis for Good Friday that has proved useful for small, modest choirs over the years.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,373
    Richard R., I am assuming that since this is under copyright, you are including permission for us to use this with our choirs. Please inform me if I am mistaken.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,373
    To broaden this topic a bit up to Pentecost, I am looking for settings of "Veni Creator Spiritus" and "Veni Sancte Spirtus" for use at Pentecost and confirmations. I have the well-known gregorian setting, but am looking for not-so-difficult settings to other melodies.
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 9,618
    Thanks, All! This is great!

    Sam... I downloaded all of them.

    RR... Beautiful piece! Thank you.

    Here is another great page of motets I found today.

    Here are a couple of mine that might interest you.

    I have the elementary choir singing the second one.

    O Vos Omnes

    Despectum et Novissimum
  • GavinGavin
    Posts: 2,799
    CharlesW: Why choose one or the other when you can do both??
  • Crux Fidelis is free to Forum readers for unlimited reproduction.

    But if I see it somewhere with your name on it...
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,373
    "CommentAuthorRichard R. CommentTime17 minutes ago
    Crux Fidelis is free to Forum readers for unlimited reproduction.

    But if I see it somewhere with your name on it..."

    LOL! That will never happen. I am also a librarian and we tend to get really upset with plagiarism. Many thanks, however, since my choir and congregation will enjoy this composition.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,373
    Thanks, Gavin. I like it.
  • I still have so much to learn... my schola has been learning Ave Regina Caelorum (chant) and I was wondering how it was traditionally used during Lent? I was thinking of using it at some point (perhaps an offertory short piece) during the Mass... is that acceptable?
  • Charles W.,

    Here's the Veni Creator set to the "Ave vera virginitas" section of Josquin's famous four-part "Ave Maria." (Does not include all the verses of the hymn.) I have used it very effectively over the years.

    Sam Schmitt
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,373
    Thank you for the Josquin. I can use this.
  • eft94530eft94530
    Posts: 1,576
    janetgorbitz: "... Ave Regina Caelorum (chant) ... during the Mass ..."

    An antiphon so called from its first line, Ave regina caelorum (Hail, Queen of Heaven). It is one of the four Antiphons of the Blessed Virgin sung in the Divine Office in turn throughout the year, and is assigned thus from Compline of 2 February (even when the Feast of the Purification is transferred) to Holy Thursday exclusively.

    Divine Office, aka Liturgy Of The Hours, aka Breviary, not during the Mass.
  • There is a long tradition of singing antiphon texts during mass; in fact, many motets are just that - settings of antiphon texts from the Divine Office (e.g. O Sacrum Convivium, Ave Maria, etc.) At high mass (extraordinary form) other texts are permitted as long as the proper texts are sung first.

    So I don't think there's any problem with singing the Ave Regina Caelorum during mass, although technically its proper place is in the office.

    Sam Schmitt
  • Janet G:

    I see no reason not to use the seasonal Marian antiphons during a Novus Ordo Mass.

    My little schola sings the SMA whenever we sing at Mass--OK, sometimes during the prelude but also as an option during offertory or as a Communion meditation. They're beautiful, they're simple, and both the singers and the congregation deserve to be exposed to them.

    Lucy Carroll talks about their use at the end of Mass:

  • Thanks very much... I would assume a similar thing for the Ave Maris Stella or Regina Caeli Jubila?
  • gregpgregp
    Posts: 632
    We have been singing the appropriate Marian hymn at the conclusion of the Last Gospel (or following the prayers after the Low Mass) every week since the EF returned to our diocese last June. We start Ave Regina Caelorum this Sunday. Once again, the PBC is indispensable!
  • dvalerio
    Posts: 341
    Singing the Marian Antiphon at the end of Mass is by no means unprecedented. A curiosity: in the Bragan Rite this was mandatory. (I say «was» and not «is» because as far as I know that Rite, which is now optional, is only seldom celebrated, if at all.) The Marian Antiphons, however, were different from those of the Roman Rite. You can check that here.