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Ave Maria

By Johannes Ockeghem

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ATTB choir a cappella
Composed by Johannes Ockeghem (1410-1497). Edited by Ralph W. Buxton. Liturgical Use: Marian Feasts. Text: Latin. Choral. Vocal Score. Duration ca. 3 minutes. Notre Dame Choir Editions #NDC004. Published by Notre Dame Choir Editions (PE.NDC004).

Item Number: PE.NDC004


This brief Ave Maria survives as a late addition to a lavishly illuminated manuscript prepared for a Burgundian nobleman and now one of the irreplaceable treasures of the Vatican Library. A free setting of this Offertory text, the motet is composed without reference to any known chant melody. As one expects in the music of Ockeghem, the sonic texture is characteristically dark, yet strikingly beautiful. The four voices sing mostly in their lower registers (Ockeghem was known to have a powerful bass voice) and freely surge and soar, avoiding obvious motives or patterns of repetition; the whole coheres with a mystic power and intensity.

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