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Ave Maria

By Tomas Luis de Victoria

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SATB choir, a cappella
Composed by Tomas Luis de Victoria (1548-1611). Edited by Andrea Angelini. Text: Hail Mary. Renaissance treasure. Marian. Octavo. Published by CanticaNOVA Publications (C5.7019).

Item Number: C5.7019

This motet is part of our Treasury of Sacred Music Series, a collection of choral gems about which Vatican Council II was speaking in Sacrosanctam concilium: "The treasury of sacred music is to be preserved and cultivated with great care." Tomas Luis da Victoria was a Spanish composer-priest of the sixteenth century. His meticulous choral writing embodied the spirit and myticism of the great Spanish saints, Teresa of Avila and John the Cross. He spent over twenty years in Rome, learning the sublime Renaissance style from his teacher Palestrina. Invigorated by the climate of the Catholic Counter-reformation, he composed only sacred music, before returning to Madrid to spend his last years in the simple life-style of a discalced Carmelite. This setting of the Ave Maria, the salutation of the Angel Gabriel to Mary, seems to have been published only after the composer's death, even though now it is one of his most beloved works. It borrows the incipit, or "introduction," from the Gregorian chant setting of the same text. Prof. Angelini, of Rimini, Italy, has edited Victoria's manuscript, using changing time signatures to capture the flowing rhythms of the original, and has added suggestions for tempi and dynamics.

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