From Saint-Eugène again: Veni veni Emmanuel and Rorate caeli desuper and Venez divin Messie-- very nice preparation 'in the Christmas spirit'. The Fourth Advent Sunday Mass is here. It has been raining since midnight, almost continuously, but I believe it is stopped-- I hope long enough for me to go out for my morning spatiamentum and say the first part of the day's rosary. Have said Prime already; it is just after 0600.
Was mistaken; my hearing misled me, I guess. Would have been drenched on return here so decided that in this instance discretion is the better part of valor; a first breakfast of bagel and cream cheese.
The antiphona ad communionem of today's Mass, Ecce Virgo concipiet, is the subject of Dr Hélène Derieux's presentation in the Neumz series 'digital Advent calendar'. YouTube is saying that the video isn't found-- yet, mirabile dictu, I am watching it-- so will link to it here. I will check back later on and see if the Neumz page is updated; it is true that today's isn't there. I had access via the email they sent to subscribers last night; perhaps Dr D. said some outrageous and obvious nonsense to the effect that 'Mary Did You Know' is an organic development of Ecce Virgo concipiet... but of course she doesn't. She does say 'world' when she means 'word' but I cannot imagine that would be too great an impediment to anyone's understanding; who knows.
Ah, it is there now, when Otello is being tortured-- Voglio la certezza!-- by Iago.
Later, post Vesperas. I see I didn't include the 'O' Antiphon's text. Since the feast of the Apostle Saint Thomas has begun with Vespers, it wasn't sung at the Magnificat but as the antiphon at the commemoration of the Advent Sunday following the collect of the feast: O clavis David et sceptrum domus Israël; qui áperis, et nemo claudit; claudis, et nemo áperit: veni, et educ vinctum de domo cárceris, sedéntem in ténebris, et umbra mortis. This is my own favorite of the lot of them. Qui aperis et nemo claudit, claudis et nemo aperit: veni et educ vinctum de domo carceris!
'Tis 'Euroradio Christmas Music Day', which evidently means a great lot of seasonal music on a great lot of radio streams. Am continuing to resist the direct choice of actual music for Christmas until Christmas but, eh, I suppose it's time to give way to the pealing of bells and Bach Brandenburg Concertos, fa la la la. Klassikaraadio is streaming No 5 in D major BWV 1050 at the moment. Telemann's Christmas Oratorio later on from Cologne and a program of Christmas song from the Prinzregententheater in Munich. I think I will look about for other 'Christmas oratorios'-- my understanding is that the Telemann is some of his Christmas cantatas run together artistically, ahem; in addition to Bach's Weihnachtsoratorium BWV 248 there are, as I recall, and I know I have some of them in a folder at Spotify, a score of such works by other composers. Just opened up BR Klassik to be prepared for later on and they are broadcasting, streaming 'Euroradio Christmas' all day, from Tallinn (what I've been listening to) to Budapest to Ljubljana to Stockholm, Cologne, and so forth. Ought to have realized that the German radio would be doing Christmas proud. Time for Terce.
Professor C.C. Pecknold at Catholic University, famous for leading many of us on Twitter through a reading of Saint Augustine's City of God in 2017 (almost four years ago!) writes at First Things about the 'O' Antiphons.
They prepare us for the great Vigil of Christmas, uniting Israel’s hopes and the desire of nations as a kind of prophetic summa in praise of divine providence. In the heart of winter’s darkness, the O Antiphons call us to worship Jesus Christ as the center of salvation history.
Am about to listen, post Sextam, to Verdi's Otello, given at the Hofoper in the 2017-2018 season, with Roberto Alagna, Dalibor Jenis, and Aleksandra Kurzak. Esultate! L'orgoglio musulmano sepolto è in mar... I wonder how long they will let this keep happening. Otello has used too much of the tanning lotion-- I wonder if this still counts as 'blackface'?
Before I forget, Vespers from Saint-Eugène.
E avrei portàto la croce crudel d'angoscie e d'onte con calma front e rassegnato al volere del ciel, I should have borne the cross of grief and shame with composure and resignation to the will of Heaven: like Otello, however, only some of us make our own occasions of grief and shame, alas.