18 December 2014

Earliest ever polyphonic notation found

'The piece was discovered by Giovanni Varelli, a PhD student from St John’s College, University of Cambridge, while he was working on an internship at the British Library.'

It dates from around 900. Read more about it here. Polyphony was being discussed at this time, but the earliest written notation up to now was from a century later.

It is organum, but not a simple matter of the one part being five notes below the other; the interval varies. It undermines the assumption that the earliest polyphony was organum carried out mechanically, with one voice following the other at a fixed interval.

The text is: 
Sancte Bonifati martyr inclite Christi te quesumus ut nos tuis precibus semper gratiae Dei commendare digneris.

O holy distinguished martyr of Christ, Boniface, we beseech you that you should always see fit in your prayers to commend us to God's grace.


With the name of 'Vitus' instead of 'Boniface' the text occurs as the single antiphon for the Vespers psalms for Vitus in two Austrian MSS of the 14th century, one of which has images on the Cantus website. This was probably the antiphon for Vespers for St Boniface.

04 June 2014

Report of meeting of Monastic Chant Forum

Meeting of the Chant Forum, Quarr and Ryde Abbeys, 1 - 5 July 2013


At the beginning of July 2013, two years after the previous meeting at Douai in May 2011, the Chant Forum gathered at Quarr Abbey on the Isle of Wight. There had been no such meeting in 2012, because the Monastic Musicians that year made Gregorian Chant the focus of their own annual session. This Quarr event was the seventh Chant Forum gathering. Hitherto the formula had been for a meeting of two full days only, but this time we made it three full days.

16 April 2014

Chant Training days in London: 31st May and 3rd August

Two opportunities for chant training in London are being organised by the Schola Gregoriana of Cambridge.

They will take place in conjuction with special Sung Mass for two different events: the training will enable a larger group of amateurs to take part in singing for these Masses.

The Masses are the Latin Mass Society Pilgrimage to Our Lady of Willesden, in North West London, on Saturday 31st May (feast of Our Lady, Queen). The Shrine is at Acton Lane, Willesden, London NW10 9AX. Click for a map.

and the LMS-sponsored 'Chesterton Pilgrimage' (to seek GK Chesterton's beatification), where Mass will take place in Our Lady of Lourdes Uxbridge, on Wednesday 30th July. The church on the Osborn Rd (or, more simply, next to the A4020), and the post code is UB8 1UE. Click for a map.

Anyone who would like to join the Schola Gregoriana on either occasion please get in touch with the Schola Gregoriana in advance.

Numbers are limited only by the capacity of the choir gallery! And they are both a pretty large.

Tel: 01223 263063

Post:
Schola Gregoriana of Cambridge, 
St Benedict's, 
124 Cambridge Road, 
Barton, 
Cambridge CB23 7AR.

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LMS Pilgrimage to Our Lady of Willesden, last year.

13 March 2014

Chant Workshop in Somerset, 28th June

GREGORIAN CHANT WORKSHOP 

Led by Rupert Bevan

Saturday 28 June 2014 

9.30am for 10.00am to 4.30pm

includes coffee, lunch and afternoon tea 

Cost: £40.00

In this workshop, led by Rupert Bevan, you will learn about the origins of the chant and how it works, and then learn some plain chant, culminating in the singing of Vespers in Ammerdown Chapel, which offers excellent acoustics.

Rupert Bevan comes from a well-known musical family. He was Head Chorister during his time at Westminster Cathedral, which is where he first learnt the Chant. He is currently Director of Music at St John’s Catholic Church in Bath and the Director of Bradford on Avon Choral Society. In addition, he sings locally as a professional tenor soloist.

For more information or to book , please go tohttp://ammerdown.org/Gregorian-Chant-Workshop-2014 or emailcentre@ammerdown.org or ring 01761 433709

05 February 2014

Clever chant tool


The blogger 'Counter Cultural Father' has drawn attention to this extremely clever online tool. It will given a huge number of chants - all the Sundays and a few Votives (Nuptial Mass, Mass for the Dead) - in both the full chant text and at Psalm tones. With the latter, it will let you choose what Psalm tone to use. And it produces lovely clean pdfs of the chant.

It can toggle between the 1962 and the Novus Ordo calendars.

It does other clever things too. For example, if you have the Latin text of a reading, it will set it to chant according to the Gospel, Epistle or Prophecy tone. The image above is a bit of nonsense Latin which demonstrates how you can feed in your own texts.

Go and check it out!

http://gabc.romanliturgy.org/

03 October 2013

Schola Gregoriana Weekend in Whitby 22-24th November

SNEATON CASTLE CENTRE,  WHITBY


Friday 22nd November to Sunday 24th.


St. Charlemagne and the Play of Antichrist


Sing, study and learn about music from the early Middle Ages in honour of the first Holy Roman Emperor and his successors, and chants for the Feast of Christ the King.


The programme will include excerpts from the early 13th c. Office of 'St. Charlemagne' together with hymnody from the Carolingian renaissance and some of the earliest polyphony, and a speculative edited reconstruction of the semi-liturgical drama 'Ludus de Antichristo' from 12th c. Germany, in which the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I 'Barbarossa' is first seduced by Antichrist and then won back to the true faith.


This programme will be the basis of a concert to be performed by the Schola with the Bristol University Schola Cantorum on Saturday 30th November, 7.30 pm, at the Temple Church, Fleet Street, London EC4Y 7HL


The inclusive cost of board, accommodation, music and tuition is £200.
For full details, and non-residential participation, please address enquries toscholacambridge@aol.com, or St. Benedict's, 124 Cambridge Road, Barton, Cambridge, CB23 7AR   Tel:  01223 263063













06 September 2013

Call for singers for YCA retreat, 18-20 October

John Curran, of the Schola Gregoriana of Cambridge, seeks help to provide a small group of singers to support the Young Catholics’ Association annual retreat at the Franciscan house at Cold Ash, near Thatcham in Berkshire during the weekend 18-20 October.

Depending on your talents you might consider to serve as an ordinary robust choir member for Compline, Vespers and the Ordinary of Mass in the Extraordinary Form, or also help rehearse the Proper of the Mass. We will be trained by one of the Schola’s professional chant experts.

You can also take part all other events and spiritual conferences of the weekend.

John has arranged an inclusive £100.00 package from Friday evening (18th to lunch Sunday 20th October.)

Contacts: JPCSedate@aol.com; 01509 852259 (up to 8pm!)

20 March 2013

PIMMS Conference, 10th July

PMMS 125th Anniversary

There’s no place like Rome: Centres of music and liturgy before 1550

PMMS members are warmly invited to the AGM study day on 10 July 2013, held at Bedern in the city of York. The day will celebrate the Society’s 125th anniversary with a wine reception and free evening concert of conductus by candlelight, two public lectures and a series of papers held in medieval venues in York city centre. The theme of the day is the exploration of centres of music and liturgy before 1550, and will have a good balance of talks on plainchant and polyphony. Speakers include Roger Bowers, Emma Hornby, Rebecca Maloy, Andrew Kirkman, Jim Borders, Thomas Schmidt, Matthew Ward and Hannah Vlhova.

Registration will be in the region of £50 (non-members) and £35 (members and students). Delegates will be provided with lunch, refreshments, a free ticked to an evening performance at the Merchant Venturer’s Hall and a discounted ticket to a further concert at York Minster, as part of York Early Music Festival. Further details and registration will appear on the PMMS website in the new year. The day will also include the AGM, which is free to attend.

Delegates may like to stay for a few days to enjoy further events at the York Early Music Festival (Friday 5 - Saturday 13 July) and will focus on Rome, with music created under the patronage of medieval Popes, the renaissance polyphony of Palestrina, and the exuberant baroque of Handel in Italy. Special features will include a celebration of the anniversaries of Corelli (1653-1713) and Dowland (1563-1626). Artists will include countertenor Iestyn Davies, one of the world's foremost viol players Wieland Kuijken, the Italian medieval Ensemble Medusa with singer Patricia Bovi, medievalist Stevie Wishart and her group Sinfonye and Theatre of the Ayre with Elizabeth Kenny and members of the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain!

You will find the registration form attached, or alternatively you can download it from the PMMS website at http://www.plainsong.org.uk/anniv125.php

09 March 2013

Introducing: Juventutem Bristol Schola

A new affilate of the GCN is Juventutem Bristol Schola. As the name implies, this is part of the Juventutem Federation, and is composed of young people - Bristol, of course, is home to many students. They are financially supported by the Latin Mass Society, and since at celebrations of the Extraordinary Form in the Church of Holy Cross, Bristol.

Check out their blog here.

Floreat!

13 February 2013

Blasted blogger

Without deleting the blog or the blogger account, by some gremlin or other Blogger made this blog invisible for several days, and still prevents access from the custom domain name purchased for it. We are still here, however, and life goes on.

Apologies to all for the inconvenience. And may the gremlins be afflicted with halitosis.

Please update your links to http://gregorianchantnetwork.blogspot.co.uk

Chant Training at Ealing Abbey

Gregorian chant workshop

Wednesdays
6.40 to 8 pm

Bulbeck Room
Ealing Abbey

Ealing Abbey Parish Schola


Director: Jennifer Smith
0777 625 7472
je.ma.smith@virginmedia.com

ALL WELCOME

No qualifications required – only to love singing and to do so in tune!

19 January 2013

Chant training in Gloucestershire

From an email.

We are holding a day-long Plainchant workshop on 

Saturday 16th February 2013
 
from 10 am to 4.30 pm at the Marist Convent, Nympsfield.

The workshop will be led by former Westminster Cathedral Head Chorister Rupert Bevan. It is aimed at those with some musical knowledge/ability.

There is no charge for tuition: the purpose of the workshop is to form a small Schola to sing at Mass once a month on a Sunday evening at St Dominic’s, Dursley.

To find out more, please contact
Sara Harvey-Craig on tel: 01453 872925
or email: saraharveycraig@hotmail.com

14 January 2013

Announcing the Chant Training Weekend 2013

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The Gregorian Chant Network's annual big chant course - a three-day intensive course (Friday afternoon/evening to Sunday morning) - will take place 5th to 7th April 2013. That is, Easter Friday to Low Sunday, the weekend after Easter itself, at the Oratory School, near Reading (map).

It will be led by Christopher Hodkinson, one of the Musical Directors of the Schola Gregoriana of Cambridge. 

Each of them has an enormous experience of chant, its interpretation and performace, and having two chant teachers will enable participants to be divided for various purposes in the course of the weekend, enabling everyone to be taught in a way appropriate to their experience.

IMG_9775
The course has always run alongside the St Catherine's Trust Family Retreat. Apart from seeing the vast number of small children devoted to the Church ancient liturgy, which is always fun, this means that participants in the chant course have the opportunity to sing at a succession of live liturgical events with an appreciative audience. Each of the three days has a Traditional Sung Mass, which have a special interest because it will be the week after Easter. There is also Compline on two days, and Vespers and Benediction on the Saturday. The Retreat this year will be led by Fr John Hunwicke of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham.

The headline price is £90 all inclusive (tuition, accomodation and meals), and this falls dramatically for groups of singers from the same schola, if the schola is affiliated to the GCN. (And yes, of course you can affiliate right away at no cost, if you want to take advantage of this offer!). There is also a discount for LMS members, thanks to sponsorship from the Latin Mass Society. This means that it can be as cheap at £30 a person!

£90 per person
£50 each for 2 people from the same choir or schola
£40 each for 3 or more people from the same choir or schola
£10 discount for LMS members

The GCN's hope is that the course will be taken by enough members of a given group to make a difference to performance when they get home, and not just by an individual here and there. It is up to Chant Directors to make this happen!

IMG_9628  
Download an application form:
For Choir directors signing up several people;
For individuals, and for the Retreat.

Or email us: info@stcatherinestrust.org