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Gregorian Chant

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'''Gregorian chant''', or less commonly known as '''Carolingian chant''' is the central tradition of Western [[w:plainsong|plainchant]], a form of [[w:monophony|monophonic]] [[liturgy|liturgical]] music within [[Western Rite|Western Orthodoxy]] that accompanied the celebration of [[Divine Liturgy]] and other ritual services. It is named after [[Gregory the Dialogist|Pope Gregory I]], Bishop of Rome from 590 to 604, who is traditionally credited for having ordered the simplification and cataloging of music assigned to specific celebrations in the church calendar. The resulting body of music is the first to be notated in a system ancestral to modern musical notation. In general, the chants were learned by the viva voce method, that is, by following the given example orally, which took many years of experience in the Schola Cantorum. Gregorian chant originated in monastic life, in which celebrating the 'Divine Office' eight times a day at the proper hours was upheld according to the [[Rule of St. Benedict]]. Singing psalms made up a large part of the life in a monastic community, while a smaller group and soloists sang the chants. In its long history, Gregorian chant has been subjected to many gradual changes and some reforms, especially after the [[Great Schism]].
===Development of earlier plainchant===
Singing has been part of the liturgy since the earliest days of the Church. Until the mid-1990s, it was widely accepted that the psalmody of ancient Jewish worship significantly influenced and contributed to early Christian ritual and chant. This view is no longer generally accepted by scholars, due to analysis that shows that most early Christian hymns did not have Psalms for texts, and that the Psalms were not sung in [[synagogue]]s for centuries after the Destruction of the Second Temple in [[Anno Domini|AD]]&nbsp;70.<ref>David Hiley, ''Western Plainchant'' pp. 484–5.</ref> However, early Christian rites did incorporate elements of ancient Jewish worship that survived in later chant tradition. Canonical hours have their roots in ancient Jewish prayer hours. "Amen" and "alleluia" come from [Hebrew, and the threefold "sanctus" derives from the threefold "kadosh" of the Kedusha.<ref>Willi Apel, ''Gregorian Chant'' p. 34.</ref>
The [[New Testament]] mentions singing [[hymn]]s during the [[Last Supper]]: "When they had sung the hymn, they went out to the [[Mount of Olives]]". Other ancient witnesses such as [[Clement of Rome|Pope Clement I]], [[Tertullian]], [[Athanasius of Alexandria|St. Athanasius]], and [[Egeria]] confirm the practice,<ref>Apel, ''Gregorian Chant'' p. 74.</ref> although in poetic or obscure ways that shed little light on how music sounded during this period.<ref>Hiley, ''Western Plainchant'' pp. 484–7 and James McKinnon, ''Antiquity and the Middle Ages'' p. 72.</ref> The 3rd-century Greek "Oxyrhynchus hymn" survived with musical notation, but the connection between this hymn and the plainchant tradition is uncertain.<ref>McKinnon, James W.: "Christian Church, music of the early", Grove Music Online ed. L. Macy (Accessed 11&nbsp;July&nbsp;2006), [ (subscription access)]</ref>
Musical elements that would later be used in the Roman Rite began to appear in the 3rd century. The ''[[Apostolic Tradition]]'', attributed to the theologian Hippolytus, attests the singing of Hallel psalms with Alleluia as the refrain in early Christian ''agape'' feasts.<ref>Hiley, ''Western Plainchant'' p. 486.</ref> Chants of the Office, sung during the canonical hours, have their roots in the early 4th century, when desert [[monk]]s following [[Anthony the Great|St. Anthony]] introduced the practice of continuous psalmody, singing the complete cycle of 150 psalms each week. Around 375, antiphonal psalmody became popular in the Christian East; in 386, [[Ambroseof Milan|St. Ambrose]] introduced this practice to the West.
Scholars are still debating how plainchant developed during the 5th through the 9th centuries, as information from this period is scarce. Around 410, [[Augustine of Hippo]] described the responsorial singing of a Gradual psalm at Mass. At ca. 520, Saint [[Benedict of Nursia]] established what is called the rule of St. Benedict, in which the protocol of the Divine Office for monastic use was laid down. Around 678, Roman chant was taught at York.<ref>James McKinnon, ''Antiquity and the Middle Ages'' p. 320.</ref> Distinctive regional traditions of Western plainchant arose during this period, notably in the British Isles (Celtic chant), Spain (Mozarabic), Gaul (Gallican), and Italy (Old Roman, Ambrosian and Beneventan). These traditions may have evolved from a hypothetical year-round repertory of 5th-century plainchant after the western [[Roman Empire]] collapsed.
Not much is known about the particular vocal stylings or performance practices used for Gregorian chant in the Middle Ages. On occasion, the clergy was urged to have their singers perform with more restraint and piety. This suggests that virtuosic performances occurred, contrary to the modern stereotype of Gregorian chant as slow-moving mood music. This tension between musicality and piety goes far back; Gregory the Great himself criticized the practice of promoting clerics based on their charming singing rather than their preaching.<ref>Hiley, ''Western Plainchant'' p. 504.</ref> However, Odo of Cluny, a renowned monastic reformer, praised the intellectual and musical virtuosity to be found in chant:
{{cquote|"For in these [Offertories and Communions] there are the most varied kinds of ascent, descent, repeat..., delight for the ''cognoscenti'', difficulty for the beginners, and an admirable organization... that widely differs from other chants; they are not so much made according to the rules of music... but rather evince the authority and validity... of music."<ref>Apel, p. 312.</ref>}}
True antiphonal performance by two alternating choruses still occurs, as in certain German monasteries. However, antiphonal chants are generally performed in responsorial style by a solo cantor alternating with a chorus. This practice appears to have begun in the Middle Ages.<ref>Apel, ''Gregorian Chant'' p. 197.</ref> Another medieval innovation had the solo cantor sing the opening words of responsorial chants, with the full chorus finishing the end of the opening phrase. This innovation allowed the soloist to fix the pitch of the chant for the chorus and to cue the choral entrance.
===Medieval and Renaissance music===
Gregorian chant had a significant impact on the development of medieval and [[Renaissance music]]. Modern staff notation developed directly from Gregorian neumes. The square notation that had been devised for plainchant was borrowed and adapted for other kinds of music. Certain groupings of neumes were used to indicate repeating rhythms called [[rhythmic mode]]smodes. Rounded noteheads increasingly replaced the older squares and lozenges in the 15th and 16th centuries, although chantbooks conservatively maintained the square notation. By the 16th century, the fifth line added to the [[staff (music)|musical staff]] had become standard. The [[Clef#Bass clef|bass clef]] and the [[Flat (music)|flat]], [[Natural sign|natural]], and [[sharp (music)|sharp]] accidentals derived directly from Gregorian notation.<ref>Chew, Geoffrey and Richard Rastall: "Notation", Grove Music Online, ed. L. Macy (Accessed 27&nbsp;June&nbsp;2006), [ (subscription access)]</ref>
Gregorian melodies provided musical material and served as models for tropes and [[liturgical drama]]sdramas. Vernacular hymns such as "Christ ist erstanden" and "Nun bitten wir den heiligen Geist" adapted original Gregorian melodies to translated texts. Secular tunes such as the popular Renaissance "[[In Nomine]]" were based on Gregorian melodies. Beginning with the improvised harmonizations of Gregorian chant known as [[organum]], Gregorian chants became a driving force in medieval and Renaissance [[polyphony]]. Often, a Gregorian chant (sometimes in modified form) would be used as a ''[[cantus firmus]]'', so that the consecutive notes of the chant determined the harmonic progression. The Marian antiphons, especially ''Alma Redemptoris Mater'', were frequently arranged by Renaissance composers. The use of chant as a cantus firmus was the predominant practice until the [[Baroque]] period, when the stronger harmonic progressions made possible by an independent bass line became standard.
The Catholic Church later allowed polyphonic arrangements to replace the Gregorian chant of the Ordinary of the Mass. This is why the Mass as a compositional form, as set by composers like [[Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina|Palestrina]] or [[Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart|Mozart]], features a Kyrie but not an Introit. The Propers may also be replaced by choral settings on certain solemn occasions. Among the composers who most frequently wrote polyphonic settings of the Propers were [[William Byrd]] and [[Tomás Luis de Victoria]]. These polyphonic arrangements usually incorporate elements of the original chant.
===20th century===
The renewed interest in [[early music]] in the late 19th century left its mark on 20th-century music. Gregorian influences in classical music include the choral setting of four chants in "Quatre motets sur des thèmes Grégoriens" by [[Maurice Duruflé]], the carols of [[Peter Maxwell Davies]], and the choral work of [[Arvo Pärt]]. Gregorian chant has been incorporated into other genres, such as [[London Boys]]'s "Requiem" and some other dance compositions, [[Enigma (musical project)|Enigma's]] "[[Sadeness (Part I)]]", the chant interpretation of pop and rock by the German band [[Gregorian (band)|Gregorian]], the New age project [[Era (musical project)|Era]], the [[techno]] project [[E Nomine]], many of the songs by American Power/Thrash metal band [[Iced Earth]], and the work of [[black metal]] band [[Deathspell Omega]]. The modal melodies of chant provide unusual sounds to ears attuned to modern scales. It has also been used in [[The Omen]]'s main theme, [[Ave Satani]]==Notes==<references/>
<references />
*''Graduale triplex'' (1979). Tournai: Desclée& Socii. ISBN 2-85274-094-X
* ''Graduale Lagal''' (1984 / 1990) Chris Hakkennes, Stichting Lagal Utrecht ISBN 90-800408-2-7
[[Category:Church Music]]
[[ro:Cântarea gregoriană]]

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