Sunday, April 24, 2011


I have to tell you, I'm having a blast at Sacred Heart! The entire Holy Week/Easter festivities went over nicely. I've gotten a number of compliments from a number of parishioners and from Father Bucci.

Thank you! --- I want to thank the brass trio (George on trumpet, Chris on flugelhorn, and Jerry on French horn) and the small choir (soprano Elaine, alto Kate, and baritone Chris) for making our music festive and beautiful. I also want to thank my wife Ann (xoxoxoxo) and an elderly parishioner whose name I haven't gotten yet for helping me insert pew cards for the Picchi Mass before the Vigil last night.

Picchi Mass? --- One of the things I had the pleasure of learning is the "Messa 'Christo Riscuciti" by Luigi Picchi (pronounced "PEE-kee"). As noted in an earlier combox, Luigi Picchi was best known for arranging the melody of St. Alphonsus Liguori of a favorite Christmas carol of Italians everywhere, "Tu Scendi della Stelle". Anyhoo, the "Christo Riscuciti" Mass is based mainly on the tune known in Latin as "Surgit in Haec Dies" or in German as "Christ Ist Erstanden", depending on which hymnal you're skimming through. We are doing the Sanctus and Agnus Dei from that Mass throughout the Easter Season. It's not a hard Mass for people to pick up at all. There are people that sing it (and mind you - it's in LATIN!). Father B. belts it out! My predecessor Dave introduced me to this Mass about a year ago. I'm fixing to learn the Gloria soon, as I will very likely program it for Easter 2012.

One of the funniest moments in my 30 years as an organist happened this very morning before the 9:00 Mass. Before the 9:00 and 11:15 Masses, the brass trio did their own prelude on "Thine Be the Glory" (melody from Handel's Judas Maccabeus). Immediately following their rendition of "Thine Be the Glory", not to be outdone, the carillon bellowed out - guess what! - "Thine Be the Glory", in the SAME KEY that the brass trio used (key of E-flat). None of us in the gallery could keep a straight face. It was just too damn funny!

My wishes to all readers for a happy and blessed Easter Season.




Richard Chonak said...

I think one of the choirs at the CMAA Colloquium is doing a Picchi Mass this year.

Brian Michael Page said...

Let me know which one when you find out.