CAROLS
O magnum mysterium (O great mystery)


SSAA a cappella

Cristobal de Morales' O magnum mysterium originated as a treble voices piece; what is represented here is not a reworking of an SATB piece. Directors may find good results by placing some high sopranos on the soprano two part since it is virtually the same tessitura as the soprano one part. The version here is in G Flat; the original is pitched a half step lower in F, which could be utilized, although most directors prefer to avoid that key for tuning reasons. Some choirs might even prefer to take it down to a tonic E or E flat, which might necessitate bringing some of the lowest second alto notes up an octave.

 

TRANSLATION

O great mystery and wonderful sacrament,
that animals should see the newborn Lord
lying in a manger.

Blessed is the Virgin, whose womb
was worthy to bear Christ the Lord.

Lord, I heard your voice and was afraid:
I considered your works
and I became frightened: as between two animals.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

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