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New Catholic Music by Kevin Allen

Like the "Second Spring" we've been seeing in church architecture, there is also something of a renewal of church music these days... and one of its bright lights is Chicago composer and conductor Kevin Allen. We are fortunate that he will return to the Mundelein Liturgical Institute's Sacred Music Retreat in June of 2010 as schola director. His web site tells that he has "developed a unique reputation as a composer of church music for the Roman Rite" and that his "works, sacred and secular, have been performed in churches and concert halls throughout the United States and Europe." Click the video below to enjoy a beautiful setting of "Desidero mi, Jesu" ("I desire, oh my Jesus, that you would refresh me on this, the food of angels") sung by soloists from the Lincoln Chamber Chorale in Chicago, directed by Timothy Woods. Imagine hearing this during your communion meditation... then realizing it is new music. Sing a new song unto the Lord, indeed.


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12 comments:

Mother Crab said...

The choir at St. Francis de Sales Oratory (Institute of Christ the King) in St. Louis, MO will be singing Kevin Allen's Missa Cunctipotens Genitor Deus (2000) on the feast of St. Francis de Sales, a patron of the Institute, on January 29th.

Mr. Allen will be there as well!

Dr_George said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dr_George said...

This is simply beautiful! As a former classically-trained, professional musician, I have always felt that the beauty of the music should fit perfectly to the beauty of the text and to its purpose or function. Kevin does a marvelous job here.

Brian said...

It's about time I posted a supportive comment here. You posted a fine sample. May Allen realize his full potential and touch all the hearts and souls he possibly can.

Anonymous said...

He is truly gifted. It is refreshing to see someone use the talents the Lord gave him to praise the Lord.

Maurisa said...

That gave me chills. Beautiful! What a wonderful way of using the talent he has been given by God.

Blackrep said...

Take that, Michel Joncas. You need to go back to school(and take the grotesque Eagles Wings with you).

Margaret said...

Wow. Just wow. I dabble in liturgical composing, and when I hear something like Mr. Allen's work, I realize that dabbling is truly all I do in comparison...

Niall Mor said...

Lovely.

I discovered the polyphonic liturgical music of Tallis, Palestrina, et al., just a few years ago and realized how I had been cheated out of my precious musical heritage as a Catholic by the cheesy ersatz "folk music" of the '60s and '70s. This piece hearkens back to those older composers and older style, and it is glorious to hear.

Jonathan said...

He only missed the first Renaissance by about 500 years... I would say the Church is greatly in need of another. The restoration of truly great liturgical music will be a great help.
As Palestrina is rightly considered to be the "Savior of Church Music", perhaps we are seeing the next "Savior of Church Music". I see no small parallel between Palestrina and Allen, especially as regards Palestrina's great popularity with counter-reformationists due to his beautiful madrigal settings of sacred texts.
Surely, if Marty Haugen were dead, he would be spinning in his grave.
If you've never seen this, it's definitely worth it: http://oxfiles.blogspot.com/2006/03/ten-step-marty-haugen-song-writing.html

Pray for the continuation of the wonderful work Kevin Allen is composing! (Why do I think this is not going to catch on in the Richmond diocese? *sigh*)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting. More..more..

Anonymous said...

Beautiful music indeed! Check out comments Kevin Allen makes re: the Institute of Chirst the King's restoration of its Chicago shrine starting at 4:40

http://www.institute-christ-king.org/
chicago/chicago-restoration/

He's clearly a devotee of the Institute. I am in agreement - I hope more Bishops could arrange to have these great priests (or cannons rather) establish parishes across the country. Long live the Institute!

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