Ensemble Organum directed by Marcel Pérès
Old Roman Chant, 7th-8th Centuries, Byzantine period
The music presented is part of the “Old Roman” chant repertory which pre-dates what is usually referred to as Gregorian Chant. The Gregorian Chant which most people are familiar with actually comes from the Carolingian Empire (ca. 850-1000), which came into existence later than the Old Roman period. Hence, the reportoire from the Old Roman period is unsingable if sung in the style suggested by Gregorian scholars for Carolingian chants. However, since the Roman church had been heavily influenced by the
Byzantine Empire during this period, it was logical to turn to Byzantine chants for guidance and performance hints. Thus, there are similarities between the Old Roman chant and Byzantine chant such as modal, cadential, and ornamental formulas. Also used in the performance here is an “ison”, a note sustained in the bass to support the chant melody and to underscore modal transformations. With all these stylistic choices in mind, the result is eye-opening. The listener will be transported to a totally unfamiliar, but other-worldly realm. The voice of the Greek cantor Lycourgous Angelopoulos flows freely in this sacred space, supported by the choir of Ensemble Organum.
The chants in Latin are taken from the Mass for Easter Day. The alleluiatic verses in Greek were sung at other point in the Easter services.
1. Alleluia: V. O Pimenon ton Israhil
2. Introït: Resurrexi
3. Gradual: Hec dies: V. Confitemini Domino / Dicat nunc Israhel
4. Alleluia: V. Pascha nostrum / V. Epulemur / Alleluia
5. Offertory: Terra Tremuit: V. Notus in ludea / V. Et factus est in pace / V. Ibi confregit
6. Alleluia: V. Epi si kyrie
7. Communion: Pascha nostrum8. Alleluia: V. O Kyrios / V. Gar estereocsen
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