2007 Colloquium: Washington

June 19-24, 2007

The Sacred Music Colloquium had been held several times at the Catholic University in Washington and at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, but 2007 was the year when we realized that the event was growing beyond the capacity of the facilities available! At the time the Colloquium could only accept 125 participants.

We formed several chant ensembles according to experience and voice (men and women), but for polyphony we were a single choir under the direction of Dr. Buchholz, then music director at the Cathedral in Denver, though a few works were sung by a chamber-sized group directed by Scott Turkington. (Music for the colloquium was distributed in a chant packet and a choral packet.)

Most of the Masses were offered in the Shrine’s Crypt Church, except for the Mass on Saturday afternoon offered at Mary Mother of God Church downtown.

Tuesday, June 19

After the registration on Tuesday afternoon, Dr. William Mahrt, president of CMAA, began the Colloquium with an “Introduction to Sacred Music”:

Workshops also started in the afternoon with a session on conducting basics and a session of clergy training for sung Mass.

After dinner, there were the first rehearsals for chant and polyphony repertoire, followed by Night Prayer.

Wednesday, June 20

The Mass on Wednesday morning in the Shrine’s Crypt Church was a ferial Mass in English for the 11th week of the year, and featured English propers by Fr. Samuel Weber, with a group of faculty serving as cantors.

Chant and polyphony rehearsals continued in the afternoon, followed by a talk by chaplain Fr. Robert Skeris on the theology of worship. In the evening, Dr. Peter Latona presented an organ recital in the Shrine’s upper church.

Thursday, June 21

The annual Requiem Mass for departed members of CMAA was celebrated by Fr. Jeffrey Keyes, at the time pastor of St. Edward Parish in Newark, CA:

Here are some audio excerpts:

After rehearsals, Prof. Kurt Poterack presented a talk on “Selecting Excellent Hymns”, and after dinner there was a presentation on the Communion antiphons of the Graduale Romanum.

Friday, June 22

On the memorial of Ss. John Fisher and Thomas More, martyrs, the Mass included Victoria’s Missa “O quam gloriosum” and motets by Tallis and Bruckner.

Before dinner, we heard a lecture by Dr. Mahrt on the Responsorial Psalm, and in the evening, there was a variety time of short performances by small groups with skits and musical offerings.

Saturday, June 23

On Saturday afternoon, the Colloquium’s Mass was the 5 p.m. Mass at Mary Mother of God Church in Washington’s Chinatown neighborhood. At the time this was the one area parish authorized to offer Mass according to the Missale Romanum of 1962, as the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum had not yet been announced by the Holy See. Hence for some attendees it provided a first opportunity to experience the older form of Mass.

The service was an anticipatory Mass of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist, with the Mass ordinary by Croce, and motets by Monteverdi and Palestrina. Since the same music was presented Sunday, we’ll include it below.

Sunday, June 24

The 12th Sunday of the Year was superceded by the Feast of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist, so we sang the same selections a second time and completed our singing together with the Vespers hymn Ut queant laxis.