Saturday, November 27, 2010

Advent 1: Dominus Dabit ("The Lord will bestow")

The Communion song for today is Dominus Dabit; chant mp3 here, from Jogueschant. The text is from Psalm 85:12; here's the score:

Lovely! In English, it's:
The Lord will bestow his loving-kindness, and our land will yield its fruit.

Here's the Schola Gregoriana Mediolanensis singing this, plus a bit more:

Today's is my favorite collect of the year:
Almighty God, give us grace to cast away the works of darkness, and put on the armor of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

From Commentary on the American Prayer Book, by Marion Hatchett:
This collect was composed for the 1549 Prayer Book. The Sarum missal provided a "stir up" collect similar to that for the third Sunday of Advent.

The collect is based on verse 12 of the Epistle (Rom. 13:8-14) presently retained in the eucharistic lectionary for Year A. This expands the old Sarum Epistle (Rom. 13:11-14). The conclusion relates closely to a postcommunion prayer in the Gelasian sacramentary (no. 1145) which was included in the Gregorian under "Other Prayers for Advent" (no. 813): "that they who rejoice at the advent of your only-begotten according to the flesh, may at the second advent, when he shall come in his majesty, receive the reward of eternal life."

The striking antitheses are remarkable: cast away darkness, put on light; mortal life, life immortal; great humility, glorious majesty. The word "now" is crucial: remembering the first advent and looking toward the second, we are now, in this time, to cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light. From 1662 until the current revision this collect was to be repeated daily throughout the Advent season, a custom analogous to the use of memorials after the collect of the day in late medieval missals.

One of my favorite composers, James MacMillan, has also, it seems, written a setting of Dominus Dabit:

That's really splendid, isn't it? Here's what it says at the YouTube page about this very fine group of singers:
Hauntingly beautiful motet from James MacMillan's "Strathclyde Motets" series. Performed in the Église de Saint Merry, Paris 4e on 7th July 2010, by the Maîtrise de l'Académie Vocale de Paris directed by Iain Simcock. Singers aged 13-18.

Morgane Collomb - Soprano
Laura Jarrell - Soprano
Rebecca Winckworth - Soprano
Brian Cummings - Counter-tenor
Pierre Verneyre - Alto
Elie Enthoven - Ténor
Ivar Hervieu - Ténor
Alexandre Ducène - Baryton
Théo Bouvier - Baryton
Marco Godawatta - Baryton
Julien Godawatta - Basse
Lucas Golse - Basse
Merwan Touati - Basse

Here are all the chants for the day, from
Hebdomada Prima Adventus
Introitus: Ps. 24, 1-4 Ad te levavi (3m29.7s - 3275 kb) score
Graduale: Ps. 24, 3. V. 4 Universi, qui te exspectant (2m00.6s - 1887 kb) score
Alleluia: Ps. 84, 8 Ostende nobis (2m41.5s - 2525 kb) score
Offertorium: Ps. 24, 1-3 Ad te, Domine, levavi (1m41.0s - 1579 kb) score
Communio: Ps. 84, 13 Dominus dabit benignitatem (51.2s - 801 kb) score

And these are posts on Chantblog for the Advent 1 propers:

If you're interested in the Introits for every Sunday in Advent, see them here:

Here's an interesting St. John the Baptist that I've never seen before; it's by Jacopo del Sellaio, painted in around 1485.

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