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Easy SATB Latin Sacred piece...

I have a very active choir member that loves traditional 'high-church' Latin choral music from the Renaisance or Baroque eras, and has been pushing us to try something with a quartet.  The singers are experienced and would not be intimidated by singing in Latin, but our rehearsal time is very limited.  I would love to honor his request, but he keeps bringing me pieces that are far too long for our services, or far too difficult.  I'd like to find something 2 minutes long, that we could basically sight read.
 
I direct the choir at an Episcopal church, but it is far from typical.  The Liturgical calendar is sometimes more like a suggestion; while we will observe Advent, the sermon series will be based on classic Christmas cartoons.  We enjoy a very eclectic blended worship style.  While we typically sing one or two hymns from the Episcopal hymnal, the rest of the music is as likely to come from the Broadman hymnal as a contemporary praise book.  Our anthems are more likely published by Shawnee than Schirmer, but our congregation welcomes nearly anything, as long as it is well done.
 
Let me hear from you guys!
on November 30, 2012 12:00pm
Dear Mr. Cox:
 
Palestrina's Sicut cervus desiderat,
with a text from Psalm 42 (As the
hart desireth the waterbrooks, so
doth my heart desire thee, O God)
would be an ideal first step into this
repertoire.
 
There is an excellent Arista edition--
as well as eight different editions
in the Choral Public Domain Library.
 
Best wishes for your performance.
 
 
Thomas Sheets, D.M.A.
Applauded by an audience of 3
on December 1, 2012 3:50am
Dr Sheets' suggestion is excellent. The same composer's "Fuit homo missus a Deo", being about John the Baptist, offers something explicitly suitable for Advent. Palestrina, Lassus and Victoria adhered to a lot of conventions, so their music can be surprisingly easy to get the notes right on limited rehearsal. The OUP anthology "European Sacred Music" has examples from all three, including "Sicut Cervus".
Best wishes,
 
  Nigel.
on December 1, 2012 6:43am
Laudate Nomen Domini -- Christopher Tye (SATB)
Very easy and very short.
There are some interesting discussions about the Latin text and the English text online.
Best wishes to you,
RRW
on December 1, 2012 7:11am
I'd suggest Mozart's Ave Verum. Very easy, very beautiful, and many editions on CPDL. Also one Latin vocal score on CPDL.
 
Here's the text in English:
 
English translation:
Hail, true body,
Born of the Virgin Mary,
Truly suffered, sacrificed
On the Cross for mankind,
Whose pierced side
Flowed with water and blood,
Be for us a foretaste
In the trial of death.
 
Craig
Applauded by an audience of 1
on December 1, 2012 7:25am
David Conte's "Tantum Ergo" from "Two Hymns in Honor of the Blessed Sacrament," ECS 6598
 
on December 1, 2012 1:36pm
Greetings, Raymond...I have two suggestions: Cantate Domino Canticum Novum by Pitoni (don't remember first name) and Da Pacem Domine in diebus nostris by Melchior
Franck, arr by John Leavitt (four part treble).
 
Stephen Reddy
Modesto Church of the Brethren
Modesto, CA
on December 3, 2012 6:16am
The M Franck suggestion is a round, unless I'm mistaken, so may be performed by any combination.
 
Craig
on December 3, 2012 12:39pm
Palestrina's "Veni sponsa Christi" or his "Sicut cervus" are two very doable pieces. 
on December 4, 2012 6:26pm
The Agnus Dei from Willam Byrd's Mass for Four Voices.  It is quite polyphonic but it is relatively simple.  Listen to see if you think they could handle it.
 
 
on December 5, 2012 6:45am
Victoria, "Jesu, dulcis memoria"
 
Various free editions available here:
 
 
A performance by the Cambridge Singers:
 
 
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