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Missa Videte miraculum

composer
author of text
Ordinary of the Mass

 
Missa Videte miraculum is the most celebrated of Ludford’s works, surviving in a single source connected to St Stephen’s, the Caius Choirbook. The plainchant ‘Videte miraculum’ is the Vespers Respond for the Marian feast of the Purification (Christ’s presentation in the temple, otherwise called Candlemas). This six-voice setting includes two treble parts of equivalent range, generating an opulent texture with expanded tessitura. Rhythmic intricacy in the treble-writing (‘Domine Deus, Agnus Dei’ in the Gloria), and frequently high tessitura (both instances of the Osanna), are both testament to the standard of choirboys at Ludford’s disposal. Unusually, the cantus firmus migrates from one voice to another between sections in each movement. Again, Ludford’s sensitivity to the text is characterized by the use of distinctive vocal groupings, reduced and reassembled to give resonance to particular words, such as the intimate diminution of voices and tessitura at ‘Et incarnatus est’, moving to a lower grouping at ‘Crucifixus’, and in the Gloria the excited re-accumulation of vocal forces, one by one, from ‘Cum Sancto Spiritu’ to the final Amen. The composer introduces an alternative cantus firmus for the Agnus Dei, now adopting the verse (‘Haec speciosum’) for the original Respond, though retaining the same head-motif as the other movements.

from notes by Christian Wilson © 2018

Recordings

Ludford: Missa Videte miraculum & Ave Maria, ancilla Trinitatis
Studio Master: CDA68192Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available

Details

Movement 1a: Gloria in excelsis Deo
Track 24 on CDA68192 [2'51]
Movement 1b: Domine Deus, Agnus Dei
Track 25 on CDA68192 [1'22]
Movement 1c: Qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere
Track 26 on CDA68192 [5'11]
Movement 2a: Credo in unum Deum
Track 27 on CDA68192 [0'40]
Movement 2b: Visibilium omnium
Track 28 on CDA68192 [3'18]
Movement 2c: Et incarnatus est
Track 29 on CDA68192 [1'41]
Movement 2d: Crucifixus etiam pro nobis
Track 30 on CDA68192 [1'11]
Movement 2e: Et resurrexit tertia die
Track 31 on CDA68192 [3'55]
Movement 3a: Sanctus
Track 32 on CDA68192 [2'05]
Movement 3b: Pleni sunt caeli
Track 33 on CDA68192 [2'00]
Movement 3c: Osanna
Track 34 on CDA68192 [0'59]
Movement 4a: Benedictus
Track 35 on CDA68192 [3'19]
Movement 4b: Osanna
Track 36 on CDA68192 [1'21]
Movement 5a: Agnus Dei I
Track 37 on CDA68192 [1'53]
Movement 5b: Agnus Dei II
Track 38 on CDA68192 [1'46]
Movement 5c: Agnus Dei III
Track 39 on CDA68192 [2'25]

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