• Palestrina
    Posts: 396
    Does anyone know of a simplified version of the Good Friday Pange Lingua / Crux Fidelis?

    I could see one adapting the usual melody for Aquinas’s Pange Lingua for this purpose but wondered whether other solutions had been found.

    I note GIA’s very helpful simplifications of the Good Friday reproaches in a 1957 publication but not of the Crux Fidelis.

    This is about creating simplifications for amateur singers with limited practice time so as to produce a credible result… without resorting to poorly thought out falsobordoni, metrical settings etc (ie. still quarried out of the chant tradition in some way).
  • kevinfkevinf
    Posts: 1,188
    Fr. Weber's gradual has it in English but very true to the Gregorian melody. Really nice.
  • GerardH
    Posts: 426
    The Hymnal 1982 has a metric-ish rendering of the plainchant at #165. I was hoping I could find a German chorale version of the chant, such as one finds for Veni creator and other chant hymns, but I've had no success.

    Honestly though, I have had an ad hoc choir with no chant experience singing Crux fidelis with refrain in Latin and verses in English with no trouble at all. If you're really stuck, give the verses to one or two of the better singers.
  • Palestrina
    Posts: 396
    This will be for a 1962 Missal context so will need to be entirely in Latin.

    The aim is for something simple - and impossible to botch(!) - out of the chant treasury. Interestingly I see that the Graduale Simplex contains a simplified version of the reproaches (sans Greek and Latin alternations). I wish Cardine had cited all his sources throughout!
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 2,068
    How long do your people take for the adoration? Because if you have limited practice time, I would do the entire reproaches and call it a day; nothing requires you to sing everything (well, maybe some rubric or instruction for the 1955 rite implies that, but it wasn’t historically required and certainly parishes need not do that!) but all you need to practice is what you need for the actual adoration. We barely get to the second reproaches that have the psalm tone-like melody.

    We never get close to the Crux fidelis.
  • Palestrina
    Posts: 396
    Given the provisions of TC, a tiny church and a gigantic congregation… I’m trying to ensure all eventualities are planned for adequately!
  • Palestrina
    Posts: 396
    In a similar vein, has anyone managed an elegant simplified solution out of the plainchant patrimony for the Sequence of Corpus Christi, which is well beyond the abolity of most amateurs?
  • trentonjconn
    Posts: 571
    Lauda Sion is long, certainly, but I'd disagree that it's beyond amateurs. My 100% amateur choir is singing it next week. I'd say give it a shot. Split it between men and women with the lower/higher verses if you're trying to break things up.
    Thanked by 1tomjaw
  • Palestrina
    Posts: 396
    Personally, I'm not a fan of giving things 'a shot'. It is not merely a matter of 'getting through' the music but ensuring that it is done well. To do any less merely undermines the cause. It is for this reason that I would prefer an outstanding result from careful simplification than a middling result from taking one's chances.
    Thanked by 1Liam
  • smvanroodesmvanroode
    Posts: 978
    This was once my take on simplifying Crux fidelis...
    675 x 608 - 26K
  • Palestrina
    Posts: 396
    It's a nice idea, smvanroode - but I'm always anxious about taking the Schenker-inspired approach because of the risk of tampering with the ancient cadential structures and implied dominants in the work...

    Regarding 'Crux Fidelis', I am tending towards a Bevenot-inspired approach (think of his approach to the Mass propers) for the first verse and its repetitions, and otherwise using the same melody as for Aquinas's much-loved Pange Lingua.
  • trentonjconn
    Posts: 571
    By "give it a shot" I was simply using a colloquialism as opposed to recommending a casual approach. Obviously choirs need to be prepared. However, given the relatively simple and neumatic structure of sequences, I very much doubt that you're going to be able to find a simplified setting which is sourced from the treasury. Happy to be proven wrong though, of course.
    Thanked by 1tomjaw
  • davido
    Posts: 895
    The Crux fidelis appears in English hymnals to the Eucharistic Pange lingua tune. Not sure if this is a Sarum tradition, or a practical decision.
    Instead of a simple Gregorian melody, why not look for a modern/harmonized chorale melody? These are often easier for folks to pick up.
    Also, it’s really none of my business, but if the choir can’t learn Lauda Sion then they are under rehearsed or trying to cover too much music week to week. It is fine to have a solo cantor(s) (music director?) render chants that are too difficult for the full choir.
  • davido
    Posts: 895
    For Lauda Sion see Hymnal 1940 tunes at nos. 193, 194
  • ViolaViola
    Posts: 403
    For those who sing in English, the hymn 'Faithful cross, above all other' fits nicely to the tune Picardy.
  • davido
    Posts: 895
    Yes, I guess those are the chant tunes, it’s really 193b and 194b that provide an alternative melody to the chant tune
  • Palestrina
    Posts: 396
    Davido, when at least half the singers can’t even read music, yes, it is a stretch! Simplified propers emerged for good reasons. My only aim is to ensure that these don’t become a terminus and can always connect back to the Gregorian tradition. I expect it this was part of the reason that the Council Fathers requested a book of simple chants for small parishes… Too many other quick fixes that were undermining the aesthetic tradition of the Church.
    Thanked by 1Liam
  • Palestrina
    Posts: 396
    Not a complete solution here… but it seems the Ambrosian quarry has enough simple raw material to make a decent go of it!

    http://cantoambrosiano.altervista.org/musica/Lauda-Sion-Salvatorem.gif