need help planning Triduum music
  • This is my first year as "choir director" for our parish. I use that term loosely since our "choir" consists of my son and daughter, ages 13 and 11, a 90 year old man who can barely stand up, a middle-aged man on disability, and an older woman who sings baritone--I love them all dearly! oh, and my 15 year old son is the organist. My daughter and I are the cantors/soloists. We use OCP so I do the best I can using the best available from there. This has worked so far but I would like some help with the music for the Triduum.

    Specifically, these are the areas I need help:

    Holy Thursday: hymn/music for "foot washing"

    Good Friday: Please tell me where the music should be in this service and make suggestions. I want to avoid "Were You There" since we cannot sing it well enough. We will do "O Sacred Head, Surrounded".

    Easter Vigil: My memory of this from last year is it is very complicated. Would someone be willing to take me through this step by step and suggest good music?

    Thank you so much. This forum has been a life saver for this newbie.

  • marajoymarajoy
    Posts: 781
    Have you tried the ideas in the Simple Choral Gradual? Even with your limited forces, you could have everyone just sing the melody and the organist play the parts.
  • Excuse my ignorance, but what and where is the "Simple Choral Gradual"?
  • Aristotle Esguerra has set the simple gradual and made it very accessible for Holy Week.
    Here is a link, you will have to navigate around, download and start organizing.

    This should be helpful and could all be sung in unison.


  • It is on amazon or you can google up a free pdf
  • Or look under the category New Composition/works in progress on the sidebar.
    This forum has also hosted a link for Aristotle's work.

  • Holy Thursday, from OCP's Music Issue: I'd suggest #421, "Where Charity and Love Prevail," for washing of the feet (as #425, Ubi Caritas, should be reserved for the Offertory). It's a short, simple chant tune.

    A resource you might check into is - their "Liturgy Planning" tab can give you recommendations for all liturgies of the year, based upon the Propers and readings.
  • mahrt
    Posts: 517
    If you can manage them, the antiphons for the Maundy in the Palmer-Burgess English Gradual (available on musicasacra) are among the best adaptations of real Gregorian melodies to English that I know.
  • Here is what I am going to propose:

    SEP Introit for Holy Thursday
    Mandatm (Washing of the Feet): Where Charity and Love Prevail
    Offertory: At That First Eucharist or Donde Hay Caridad y Amor
    SEP Communion followed by Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence sans last verse
    Pangia Lingua for procession

    Good Friday
    Veneration of the Cross - Reproahes, O Sacred Head Surrounded, Stabat Mater
    Communion: O Cruz Fiel, Sing My Tongue, What Wondrous Love
  • We're actually not going to have any music this year on Good Friday during Communion. We'll see how it goes.