Friday, November 27, 2009


     As mentioned on my other blog, in honor of Thanksgiving Day, here are videos of a performance of the ancient hymn of thanksgiving, "Te Deum." But rather than the traditional Gregorian chant, this is a setting by the French baroque composer Marc-Antoine Charpentier.

     Here's the first video.

     And here's the second.

     They take it faster than I'm used to hearing it, but at least the proportions seem right. (I'd give you William David Christie's version with Les Arts Florissants if I could find the whole thing on video.) You'll also note that they pronounce the Latin as if it were French. Presumably that is how scholars believe it was done in 17th Century France.

      If you want to hear it in the "original" Gregorian chant setting, try this, which I also posted on my other blog. There is further info and a good translation in the wiki article on Te Deum.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for posting these links. I was astonished at the tempo. I had to stop listening, as it seemed indecently fast.

    The chant was altogether different. I suppose it has lasted through the centuries, because it is the most 'human' medium to facilitate collective worship. I miss the Good Fridays of my childhood, where we conducted the whole 3 hours in Latin: some of the most deeply spiritual services I have ever experienced. Thank goodness for the Oxford movement, and the flexibility (then) of the Church of England.
    G =]