Pange Lingua


1,13-3,8 2022


Cantor, 4 Voices, Chant


less than 2'



A study in unifying the three forms of liturgical music into one: recitation, chant, and polyphony.

A study in unifying my three forms of musical ideas into one: phonetic, diatonic, and tetrachordal.

Here too, my formal problems unified: the text serves to encase the structure, the perpetual transformation of a linear idea, according to a modulating set of tetrachords, occurs within it.

Thus, there is, after a few years of attempting to solve the phonetic concept of liturgical music, a return to my aesthetic of left and right handed singers: those who work on polyphony and those those who work in chant, both guided by the cantor.

Ideally the forces would then be a polychoral 1/4/Choir, with the left handed singers being one voice to a part and the right handed singers acting in the classic tutti of Christan chant. For a liturgical setting this adds not only textural contrast, but also juxtaposes different forms of musical content: the cantor is derived from phonetic pitch, the choir from purely diatonic, and the solo voices from a highly chromatic, exterior structure.

This also juxtaposes my view of musical time—that there is no time in the recitation, since the mind savors the word, not the line—with the standard conception of polyphonic time as unraveling, spinning out, as one unending experience, bound only to the tactus.

Sean Patrick Ignatius Tartaglia