Friday, May 25, 2012

New Communio Collection by Richard Rice

English Anthems for Mixed Choir
on the Communion Chants
of the Modern
Graduale Romanum

Richard Rice's new collection of Communion Chants begins a new chapter in the use of proper texts at the parish's solemn Mass. Somewhere between simplicity and polyphony, with a difficulty level that is both accessible and challenging to the accomplished amateur choir, the Choral Communio provides a fresh new musical experience each week, with a new use of a traditional structure, that will become second nature over the course of the seasons.

Verses are provided to reflect upon the proper antiphons, and each verse concludes with the second half of the antiphon. This structure of liturgical chant is familiar from the Responsories of the Liturgy of the Hours, and from the Communion chant from the Requiem Mass, Lux Aeterna.

The antiphons are taken from the Graduale Romanum, and ordinarily use the translation from the Gregorian Missal. These are not "official" translations, and some have been modified to a more precise translation. The author's rationale for these and other editorial decisions may be found in the Foreward to this volume, available here.

The ad libitum Communion chants, which may be sung throughout the year, are available on PDF for choirs who may wish to try the Choral Communio before committing to a full purchase, and may be downloaded from the author's homepage here or from the MusicaSacra website here. (Just use your printer’s booklet setting and print in two-sided format along the short edge.)

It is so often said that we should be singing the Mass, rather than simply singing at Mass. Richard Rice's Choral Communio provides an excellent resource for those who would like to sing the Mass, with an accomplished amateur choir, in English.

For more from Richard Rice, see