The renowned St. Nikolai (Velimirovich), along with so many other merits, was the leader of a renewal movement among the pious lay people of Serbia who loved to spend long hours singing spiritually edifying songs, sung in the Serbian language. These melodies lift the heart up to holy and noble things.
This CD contains two historic recordings of American Orthodox liturgical singing, made in the early 1970s by the St. John’s Girls Octet of Warren, Ohio. The re-mastered vinyl LPs, “From My Youth” and “New Valaamo,” include 25 tracks and feature a number of arrangements and compositions in English by American composers. In the summer of 1973, the Octet was invited to Alaska, where they spent six weeks traveling and singing throughout the state before thousands of native Orthodox faithful. While paying tribute to the youthful, missionary-minded spirit of St. John’s Girls Octet, the newly released CD aims to support the ongoing missionary work in Alaska, in that a portion of the proceeds will be donated to St. Herman’s Orthodox Seminary in Kodiak. “How wonderful it is for me to remember these young women….Thank you, O Lord, for this most marvelous gift that a priest can ever be given!”–From the Introduction by Father Thomas Hopko
Click here for sample tracks.
Glorify Him: Selections from the Feast of the Nativity of Christ
1. From the Rising of the Sun (Traditional)
2. Psalm 104 (Greek Chant)
3. Blessed is the Man (Kievan Chant)
4. O Gladsome Light (Znamenny Chant, arr. E Kato)
5. Prokeimenon “The Lord is King” (Carpatho – Russian Chant, arr. Paul Jannakos)
6. St. Simeon’s Prayer (Carpathian Chant)
7. Praise Ye The Name Of The Lord (Znamenny Chant – Ledkovsky)
8. From My Youth (Valaam Chant – St. Vladimir’s Seminary)
9. The Magnificat (M. M. Osorgin)
10. Today Salvation Has Come (N. Kedrov Jr.)
11. Rejoice, O Virgin Theotokos (S. Rachmaninov)
12. Hospodi Pomiluy (Lord Have Mercy) (Lovov, Arr. J.D. Ressetar)
13. Hymn to the Theotokos (G. Solak)
14. Nativity Exapostilarion (Znammeny Chant, arr. J Gardner)
15. Annunciation Magnification (Obikhod Chant)
16. Svetilen for the Dormition
17. Before Thy Cross (Goncherov)
18. Pascha Exapostilarion (arr. D. Kovalak)
19. This is the Day (D. Bortniansky)
This recording by the 1983 St Vladimir”s Seminary Octet features hymns sung in English to the incarnate and risen Lord, selected from the services of the Orthodox Church. The chants and melodies are representative of the rich tradition of Orthodox liturgical music and include Byzantine and Russian chants, compositions, several of which have been done by students at the Seminary.
Christ has come and had inaugurated a new time and a new life which are eternal. It is Christ, the Messiah, the Light of the World, the King of Kings, and the Lord of Lords who comes to “dwell among us.” “God is with us” and heaven and earth are united! Life in its fullness is restored by the Coming of the One who is Himself Life.
The members of St Vladimir”s Seminary Octet, which traveled throughout the United State and Canada during the summer of 1983, are: Charles Abdelahad, Joseph Abud, John Buckeye, Nicholas Ceko, Christopher Howley, Thomas Soroka, John Zeburn, and Gregory Solak, Director.
This recording is dedicated in thanksgiving to the memory of Gregory Solak. Memory eternal!
For Orthodox Christians, Christmas remains the feast of the Nativity–not only a date in time and a recurring festival, but an experience of the human heart.
Mount Athos, the ark of Orthodox Christianity, is undoubtedly the cradle of Byzantine music. In the period of revival of Athonian monasticism (after a period of decline), the ‘Mousikodidaskaleion’ (Musical School) of the Holy Monastery of Vatopaidi, which had for centuries been providing the musical education of monks, has resumed its activities. It endowed the monastery with a collection of melodians, a rich archive of recordings, books, manuscripts and, above all, a rich tradition which is continued by the modern chorus of the monastery. The systematic study combining the knowledge of written and the experience of the oral musical tradition forms the basis of this joint effort by Crete University Press and the Vatopaidi Monastery to fill a gap in the discography. In this framework, a CD for every day of the Holy Week was recorded. These editions contain all the classic compositions on the Holy Passion, sung in the traditional Athonite fashion. The recording were made in situ, because chanting acquires a different dimension in its natural environment. The protracted musical interpretation on an everyday basis is combined with the everlasting prayer, constituting an basic element of monastic life and leading to a deeper experience of its essence. The performance and the glorification of the Holy Passion by the monks themselves creates an atmosphere of devotion which leads to a moving truth.