Sacred Music Series

Tuesday, August 25th, 2020

Ms. Andrea Covais, OLMC Music Director

Our summer series continues as OLMC music director and music professor, Ms. Andrea Covais explores the rich tradition of sacred music. Each week we will feature a new song that will be sung during that weekend’s Masses at communion. We hope these short pieces enrich and deepen your spiritual journey during these times.

Over the next two weekends, we will focus on composers who not only wrote music, but also studied toward or became Roman Catholic priests during their lifetimes. Next week we will look at the music of French composer Charles Gounod and explore his studies for the priesthood, though never completed. This week we take a look at the music of Antonio Vivaldi, ordained at the age of 25 and known as “the red priest” for his flaming red hair. Vivaldi, born in Venice in 1678 was regarded during the Italian Baroque as one of the most influential and successful composers. For over forty years he worked and was head administrator at the Ospedale della Pietà in Venice, Italy, an orphanage for young girls. There Vivaldi served as chaplain, music educator, teacher, virtuoso violinist and composer. The girls were musically trained at the highest level in all instruments and voice, and the Ospedale had a full orchestra and choir that the girls played and sang in. They often debuted Vivaldi’s many pieces, including his concertos and sacred works.

Vivaldi’s Gloria was written around 1715 and debuted by the girls at the Ospedale that same year. For two centuries after his death it was very rarely, if ever performed until the manuscripts were discovered in the 1920’s. It was performed in Siena in 1939 for the first time in ages. The “Domine Deus” movement is written for soprano solo and its text is taken from the Gloria prayer in the Mass. The Latin translates to: Lord God, Heavenly King, God the Father Almighty. Vivaldi captures a tender and loving vision of God in this work; one can hear his spirituality through his music. Picture it sung by one of the young girls at the Ospedale in Venice, overlooking St. Mark’s Square.

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