Friday, December 10, 2010

Quempas [Quem pastores] / Kommt und laßt uns Christum ehren - Paul Gerhardt

[also here's a link to Singing the Faith - a Missouri Synod history of Lutheran hymnody]

also a feature story 'Tis the season to be German by Louise East in Irish Times, Dec. 11, 2001.

Quem pastores laudavere - Anon., ca. 1450 -- Kommt und laßt uns Christum ehren, Paul Gerhardt, 1667 -- He Whom Shepherds Once Came Praising, Lutheran Book of Worship 68, 1978

History in The Quempas Goes ’Round by Edward W. Klammer on the Good Shepherd Institute Website of Pastoral Theology and Sacred Music for the Church in Fort Wayne, Ind.
“The Quempas goes ’round” is the expression which has been used in Silesia for several hundred years to describe the delightful, worshipful, and truly beautiful custom of Quempas singing which dates back to the Middle Ages. At midnight on Christmas Eve, when the congregation had assembled for worship, four groups of boys proceeded to the four corners of the church to announce to the congregation from north, south, east, and west that “Heaven’s all-glorious King is born.” As soon as they had reached their places, group one began to sing the first phrase of the Quempas carol, “He whom joyous shepherds praised,” followed by the second group singing the second phrase, and so on. After the fourth phrase the mixed choir sang the first stanza of the Nunc angelorum, “The glorious angels came today.” Then the congregation joined both choirs in the singing of the refrain “God’s own Son is born a child.” In this manner all four stanzas of the Quempas were sung. This constituted the principal item of carol singing on Christmas Eve; in fact, the service was not considered complete without the singing of the Quempas. ...

Quem pastores laudavere, CCBNY Christmas Midnight Mass, 2007

Christ Church Bronxville performs Michael Praetorius' Quem pastores laudavere during their Christmas Midnight Mass, 2007.

Dresdner Kreuzchor Part 4: Quempas

Anthem/antiphony between children, choir and the church (They sing parts of it in latin and parts in german)

Two excerpts:

Quem pastores laudavere
quibus angeli dixere
absit vobis iam timere
natus est rex gloriae

Große Freud und gute Mär
wolln wir euch offenbaren,die euch und aller Weltsoll widerfahren."
Gottes Sohn ist Mensch geborn, ist Mensch geborn,
hat versöhnt des Vaters Zorn, des Vaters Zorn.

Hymns and Carols of Christmas website
Latin text and MIDI file -

Words: Authorship Unknown, 14th century, Hoenfurth Manuscript

Music: "Quem Pastores Laudavere," German Melody, Breslau, 1555
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / XML
Meter: 88 87
With link to Sheet Music and Text [in Latin and English] from J. H. Hopkins, ed., Great Hymns of the Church Compiled by the Late Right Reverend John Freeman Young (New York: James Pott & Company, 1887), #53, p. 84.

No comments: