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Ave Maria

author of text
Antiphon for the Blessed Virgin Mary

During his lifetime and for at least 200 years after his death, Guerrero was one of the most widely published and performed vocal composers of the Spanish Renaissance, second only to Victoria in reputation. From 1551 till his death he worked at Seville Cathedral, but also travelled widely. Ave Maria, published in 1574, is among the most serene and beautiful of his 150 or so motets, similar in mood to the better-known Ave virgo sanctissima. Like the Victoria antiphons, it is for double choir and based on a Gregorian chant—the Ave Maria chant was, moreover, familiar to most Renaissance listeners. Its first few notes are heard at the outset of the motet marked out in slow notes by the Choir 2 tenor, echoed in canon by soprano. Although the chant provided a point of reference for listeners (as did the Lutheran chorales found throughout Bach’s church and organ music), the texture woven around it is entirely Guerrero’s own, with a characteristic sense of gracefulness spun out over a leisurely time span.

from notes by Collegium Records 2006


Guerrero: Missa Congratulamini mihi & other works
Studio Master: CDA67836Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Guerrero: Missa Surge propera
Studio Master: CDGIM040Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Lighten our Darkness
COLCD131Download only


Track 12 on CDA67836 [4'24]
Track 7 on CDGIM040 [4'15]
Track 15 on COLCD131 CD1 [5'06] Download only

Track-specific metadata for CDA67836 track 12

Recording date
11 November 2009
Recording venue
Fitzalan Chapel, Arundel Castle, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Jonathan Freeman-Attwood
Recording engineer
Martin Haskell & Iestyn Rees
Hyperion usage
  1. Guerrero: Missa Congratulamini mihi & other works (CDA67836)
    Disc 1 Track 12
    Release date: August 2010
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