Colloquium Day 5: Mass at the Cathedral

The Sacred Music Colloquium ended Saturday morning with a Mass at the Shrine of St. Joseph, but we have a few more items to share from Friday.

That afternoon, Bishop Conley of Lincoln joined the Colloquium attendees at the magnificent Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis for Holy Mass, on the solemnity of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist.

The bishop and concelebrants exchange the Pax.
(Photo credits: Rene Zajner)

Thanks to the Cathedral’s media apostolate, you can view archived video of the Mass at YouTube.  (Alas, the video resolution doesn’t do justice to the glorious interior of the Cathedral Basilica.)

After the Mass, the clergy and laymen who served Mass during the week came together for a photograph:

After a break for dinner, attendees returned to the Cathedral for an organ recital by Ben Blasingame:

A beautiful day!

Reminder: live video stream of Mass from the Cathedral in St. Louis

[UPDATE: The archived video is available at YouTube.]

A scheduling note: the Colloquium’s Mass from the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis will be streamed live on the internet, thanks to the Archdiocese of Saint Louis.  The Mass begins at 5:30 p.m. Central Time (6:30 p.m. Eastern), and the stream will be available at .

The music program for the liturgy follows, with the various choirs of colloquium participants indicated. The music repertoire book is available for download at the CMAA web site.

Friday, June 24, 5:30 p.m. (Central), Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis
Mass, ordinary form, Solemnity of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist

Bishop James D. Conley (Lincoln, Nebraska), celebrant

Bishop Conley, at the plenary address
he gave Friday morning.

Horst Buchholz, organist

Organ prelude: Fantasia sopra Ut queant laxis, Johann Jakob Froberger
Introit: De ventre matris (women’s refresher chant class, Mary Ann Carr-Wilson)
Kyrie: Missa Papæ Marcelli, Palestrina (Wilko Brouwers conducting)
Gloria: Missa Papæ Marcelli
Gradual: Priusquam te (chant improvisation class, William Mahrt)
Alleluia: Tu puer (women’s chant schola, Charles Cole)
Credo III (tutti) with Et incarnatus est from Missa Papæ Marcelli
Offertory: Justus ut palma (men’s faculty master choir, David Hughes)
Offertory motet: Iustorum animæ, Stanford (motet choir, Charles Cole)
Sanctus: Missa Papæ Marcelli
Memorial acclamation: Mortem tuam (tutti)
Pater noster (tutti)
Agnus Dei: Missa Papæ Marcelli
Communion: Tu puer (chant fundamentals class, Jonathan Ryan)
Communion motet: Iesu dulcis memoria, Victoria (motet choir, Charles Cole)
Organ postlude: Improvisation on Ut queant laxis

Colloquium Day 4: Requiem

The Sacred Music Colloquium continued Thursday with rehearsals, breakout sessions, and an annual favorite, a sight-reading session for new compositions, led by the genial David Hughes.

Participants returned to the Shrine of St. Joseph for the annual Requiem Mass offered for the repose of departed members of the CMAA. For many Colloquium participants, it was the first time they had an opportunity to experience this rite of the Church in its classic form, with the chants of the Mass for the Dead and traditional practices such as the singing of the sequence Dies irae and the use of a catafalque to represent the departed for whom the Mass is offered.  Here are the assembled participants after the Mass.

Colloquium Day 3: All Together

Before I write about Wednesday, let me follow up with a little more information about events that took place on Tuesday:

Thanks to Joel Morehouse (of the Setnor School of Music, Syracuse) for posting additional photos of the Mass at St. John the Apostle Church (the pro-cathedral) at our sister site New Liturgical Movement, where Joel is also a contributor on parish music and liturgy.

At the CMAA members meeting on Tuesday, general manager Janet Gorbitz announced that the 2017 Sacred Music Colloquium will be held in St. Paul, Minnesota, from June 19 to 24, and one of the Masses will be offered at the historic St. Agnes Church in remembrance of Monsignor Richard Schuler, the long-time pastor and musician, co-founder of the CMAA, and editor of the journal Sacred Music.

In addition, Janet announced that registration is open for CMAA’s 2017 Winter Sacred Music event, to be held at the Cathedral of St. Paul in Birmingham, Alabama next January.

On Wednesday, Christ Church Episcopal Cathedral in St. Louis opened their doors and their organ loft to Prof. Ann Labounsky (Duquesne) who presented a breakout session on repertoire for pianists making the transition to the king of instruments:

And here is a view from the transept of Christ Church Cathedral:

At the end of the afternoon, Holy Mass at the Shrine of St. Joseph:

After Holy Mass, colloquium attendees came together in front of the Shrine for a group photo:

(Photo credits: Rene Zajner)

Colloquium Day 2: Let’s get started

Some glimpses of Tuesday at the Colloquium:

After morning prayer and breakfast, the first session is a chant rehearsal:
at the men’s schola session taught by Wilko Brouwers,
the curve of a neume on the paper is echoed by its counterpart outside.

In Tuesday’s plenary address,
Dr. Mahrt describes the “musical shape” of the liturgy.

Colleen Crafton from the Ward Center in Richmond, VA
brought her own choristers (!) to demonstrate a Ward Method lesson.

Photographer Rene Zajner listens in
as David Hughes (of St. Mary’s, Norwalk) and some colloquium participants
try out new compositions the latter have brought.

Scott Turkington (and his double, through the looking-glass)
present a session on conducting polyphony.
As the polyphony rehearsals begin,
Charles Cole from the London Oratory School
brings the motet choir together with some exercises.

And after that session, it is time to put things into practice, to sing for Mass at the Pro-Cathedral of St. John.

Horst Buchholz (our host this week at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis) directs the Mozart choir in Tallis’ This is my commandment:

And with Holst’s famous tune, the Mass is ended.

[UPDATE: Joel Morehouse has additional photos of the Mass and information on the music presented at our sister site New Liturgical Movement.]

Colloquium Day 1: Greetings and Felicitations

The 26th Sacred Music Colloquium of the Church Music Association of America began Monday evening in St. Louis. At the City Center Hotel, participants enjoyed a festive reception and dinner and were welcomed by chaplain Rev. Robert Pasley, the rector of Mater Ecclesiae Church in Berlin, NJ; and by our president, Prof. William Mahrt (Stanford).

The evening was made complete by a concert at the City Library, presented by Pro Arte Saint Louis, the early music ensemble conducted and co-founded by CMAA vice president Horst Buchholz.

(Photo credit: Rene Zajner)

Obituary: Fr. Ralph March, O. Cist.

Cistercian Father Ralph March, a founding member of the CMAA, died on February 6 at the age of 93.  CMAA president Bill Mahrt writes: 

Fr. Ralph March was a key member of the Church Music Association of America; he served as editor of Sacred Music and taught chant at the Colloquium for several years. He was the author of the standard treatise on Cistercian Chant and served at one time as the director of the choir at Cologne Cathedral. He was a founding member of the University of Dallas and taught there for many years. Requiescat in pace.

The following obituary appeared in the Dallas Morning News on February 7-8:

Rev. Ralph MARCH, O. Cist.  

Father Ralph March was born Rudolph Mayer on February 21, 1922 in Kormend, Hungary, a small town a few miles from the Austrian border. He was the youngest of three boys, all of whom became priests. In his early teens, he was accepted as an oblate of the Cistercian Monastery of Zirc and could thus pursue his high school studies at the Cistercian school of Saint Imre in Budapest. Upon his graduation in 1940, he entered the novitiate of the Cistercian Order in Zirc, where he also studied philosophy and theology in preparation for ordination to the priesthood. 

On the day World War II ended in Europe, May 8, 1945, he was ordained a priest in the Abbey of Zirc by Jozsef Mindszenty, later cardinal-archbishop of Esztergom. He returned to Budapest to continue his studies at the University of Budapest and at the Franz Liszt Music Conservatory there. In 1947 his abbot sent him abroad to complete his studies in French and Music in Paris. After earning a master’s of chant at the Sorbonne, he obtained his Ph.D. from the Faculty of Letters of the Institut Catholique. For his dissertation he wrote the first musicological study of the 12th-century origins of Cistercian chant. It was published in Rome in 1952 and continues to be foundational for chant studies. 

In the same year he emigrated to the United States because the Communist suppression of the Abbey of Zirc in 1950 had made it impossible for him to return to his homeland. He joined fellow Cistercians exiled from Hungary in the Cistercian monastery of Spring Bank in Wisconsin. He taught at Marquette University until the foundation of the University of Dallas, where he served on the first faculty in 1956 and, in the same year, was a founding member of the Cistercian Monastery of Our Lady of Dallas.  

In addition to working at St. Bernard’s Parish, he directed four choirs: The Dallas Catholic Choir, the Saint Bernard Chorus, the University Chorus, and the Madrigal Singers. 1966-1974 he served as editor of the quarterly Sacred Music, the oldest magazine of church music in the U.S. At the invitation of the cardinal-archbishop of Cologne, Fr. Ralph became the music director (“Domkapellmeister”) of the city’s monumental cathedral, a post he held for ten years (1977-1987). Afterwards he served as pastor in Landsberg am Lech in Germany, while also teaching music history at the University of Innsbruck in Austria. In 2000 Fr. Ralph retired to his monastery in Dallas, continued teaching at the University of Dallas, and, in cooperation with Marilyn Walker, taught and conducted Gregorian chant for the Collegium Cantorum for the following twelve years.  

He died at the age of 93 on Feb. 6, 2016, surrounded by the monks who had grown to love him so dearly. The Vigil service for Fr March will be at 7:30 p.m., Monday, February 8, 2016 in the Cistercian Abbey, 3550 Cistercian Rd. Irving, TX, 75039. The Funeral Mass will be at 2 p.m., Tuesday, February 9, 2016 at Cistercian Abbey with Right Rev. Peter Verhalen, O. Cist., Celebrant. Interment to follow at Calvary Hill Cemetery, Dallas, TX.

Two performances of the Te Deum

To be sure, the turning of the secular year is not a day of great importance to the Catholic faith. Our year of living the mysteries of salvation began some weeks ago in the Latin Church, and it began in September for Catholics of the Byzantine rite.

Yet the Church does make a concession and acknowledge the secular new year in Her way, by granting a plenary indulgence to the faithful who take part in a liturgical recitation or singing of the Te Deum laudamus on the last day of the year.  I hope you were fortunate enough to have such an opportunity near you, or perhaps will be able to gain the similar indulgence for praying the Veni creator Spiritus at some point during the liturgy on January 1.

And even without the aid of the indulgence, who would not wish to pray with the Church:

Deus, cuius misericordiae non est numerus, et bonitatis infinitus est thesaurus: piissimae maiestati tuae pro collatis donis gratias agimus, tuam semper clementiam exorantes; ut qui petentibus postulata concedis, eosdem non deserens, ad praemia futura disponas. Per Christum Dominum nostrum. 

O God, of whose mercies there is no number, and of whose goodness the treasure is infinite, we render thanks to your most gracious majesty for the gifts you have bestowed upon us, evermore imploring your clemency, that as you grant the petitions of them that ask you, you may never forsake them, but may prepare them for the rewards to come.

And so here are two performances of the Te Deum;  in the first, organist Pierre Cochereau acts as a second choir, ‘singing’ the melody in alternation with the choir of human voices.

Some months ago, a discussion on the Musica Sacra Forum sought to answer whether Cochereau has left us that Te Deum in the form of an arrangement; but the answer that emerged was that he likely had improvised the organ registrations which produced that performance’s complex harmonies.  If any readers can add more to our knowledge of the subject, please meet us in the comment box below.
And to complement that performance, here is an expansive concert version, Kodaly’s 1936 ‘Budavari’ Te Deum: 

Replay opportunity for Lessons and Carols from King’s College

If you missed hearing the 2015 Service of Nine Lessons and Carols live on Christmas Eve, you can catch a replay on BBC Radio 3 on Christmas Day at 9 AM US Eastern time; or you can replay it over the net from the website of BBC Radio 4 at your convenience; the program will be available until January 22 (approximately).

Information on the service is available on-line, including a program booklet with details of the readings and the musical selections.