Thursday, December 12, 2019

OPChant: A New YouTube Channel of Dominican Chant

Here is a great new music resource: two Dominican seminarians studying at the University of Fribourg in Switzerland, Brs Alexandre Frezzato from the Wallis region of Switerland, and Stefan Ansinger from the Netherlands, have recently started a YouTube channel called OPChant, on which they share their recordings of chants from the traditional Dominican books. The channel was begun in October; as explained in this interview in French, their long-term goal is to provide a systematic resource for promotion of the Dominican chant reportoire, which is only sporadically available on the internet. This will certainly prove helpful to those who sing at the ever-increasing number Masses in the Dominican Rite, and of course, there is no reason why such chants cannot also be used in the post-Conciliar rite of Mass. Each video is accompanied by brief notes in English explaining the use of the chant (which is very often the same as in the Roman Rite), and a GoogleDrive file with the score. Here are a few recently posted examples from the repertoire for Advent: let’s encourage them by driving up their viewing numbers, and be sure to share information about the channel with anyone you know who might be interested, and subscribe to the channel. Feliciter!!

Conditor alme siderum, the hymn for Vespers in Advent; the Dominicans and other orders who retained their own liturgical Uses (Premonstratensians, Cistercians) etc., never adopted Pope Urban VIII’s revision of the Office hymns, and so the text differs from that which is found in the Roman Breviary.
Ad te levavi, the Introit (which the Dominicans call “Officium”) of the First Sunday of Advent.
Populus Sion, the Officum of the Second Sunday
The antiphon Alma Redemptoris Mater in the more solemn tone. In the Dominican Rite, the Salve Regina is sung at the end of Compline throughout the year, accompanied by a distinctive procession; the Alma Redemptoris Mater is sung as the antiphon of the Magnificat in the Saturday Office of the Virgin between the feast of the Purification and Easter.

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