Friday, January 14, 2011

Laetabimur for Communion this Sunday

Text: We will rejoice in thy salvation: and in the name of the Lord our God we shall be exalted.

Our schola always enjoys this tricky and memorable piece of musical and textual playfulness. It is one of the more melismatic of the communion antiphons, and absolutely gorgeous. The incipit alone is stunning, rising like incense. And then the exuberance grows through the second phrase that reaches to its highest point at "-tari" at which point we've already covered a full octave and a half step. As the melody proceeds, it continues with this exuberance, going way beyond the minimum necessary to make the structure work. The entire song suggests extension, elation, even spiritual passion (though contained, as chant is).


Here is the simple English version from the SEP for Sunday:

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