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Passion according to Saint John

- Jeremy de Satgé

Use: Good Friday
Required Resources: 3 soloists, 2-pt choir
Language: English

You need not be a large parish or cathedral to effectively celebrate the Passion on Good Friday in a musically-appropriate manner. Jeremy de Satgé, founder of The Music Makers (London), has set the Lectionary text (New American Bible) for the Saint John Passion to an ancient Passion tone in a most creative yet traditional manner. Any parish with three good singers and a small choir can enhance the Passion reading on Good Friday with noble music!

This setting uses a traditional tone for the Passion (similar to a Gospel tone in the Book of Sung Gospels, or to one of the Gregorian psalm tones) for the three singers, with the music of William Byrd used for the choir:

  • Narrator — medium voice (range: D to C#)
  • Christus — low voice (range: low A to A)
  • Speakers — high voice (range: A to D)
  • Crowd — 2-part choir (ranges: C# to B / low G to A)

The Speakers' part can be divided among various singers, if desired (Maid, Peter, Officer, Servant 1, Pilate, Servant 2). The Narrator part is the most extensive, followed by the Christus role and Pilate.

Unique to this setting is the composer's adaptation of the music of William Byrd for the "crowd" role. A two-part choir (either mixed [women/men] or equal [SA or TB]) sings the role of the crowd. This technique of choral involvement in the crowd scenes adds an effective dimension of harmony and counterpoint that heightens the drama.

We offer a full-score version, containing all the singing roles plus the choral music. Since a minimum of three of these are necessary for performance, we offer a discounted price when purchasing three or more scores. A choral score is also available, containing all the choir music with preceding cue lines and music from the singers' score.

There is perhaps no better way to mark the centrality of the Passion reading at the Good Friday liturgy than by solemnly chanting it. CNP's setting by Jeremy de Satgé of the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to Saint John is a very traditional and a very practical way to do this. There is no longer any need to relegate the good musical liturgy only to the cathedral!


Order #: 3014-s
1-2 copies - $10.00/
3 or more copies -

Choral Parts
Order #: 3014-c
Price: $1.85/each


- Liturgical Settings
- Triduum
- 2-pt Choir
- Cantor
- a cappella

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