The joy of great music and art are readily available. In a world over-powered by sound and fury, it would be good to rest our minds with music from some of the great composers and literary figures in history.
- History of the music, Ave Maria:
“The original words of Ave Maria (Hail Mary) were in English, being part of a poem called The Lady of the Lake, written in 1810 by Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832). The poem drew on the romance of the legend regarding the 5th century British leader King Arthur, but transferred it to Scott’s native Scotland. In 1825 during a holiday in Upper Austria, the composer Franz Schubert (1797-1828) set to music a prayer from the poem using a German translation by Adam Storck. Scored for piano and voice, it was first published in 1826 as “D839 Op 52 no 6.” Schubert called his piece “Ellens dritter Gesang” (Ellen’s third song) and it was written as a prayer to the Virgin Mary from a frightened girl, Ellen Douglas, who had been forced into hiding.The song cycle proved to be one of Schubert’s most financially successful works, the Austrian composer being paid by his publisher 20 pounds sterling, a sizable sum for a musical work in the 1820s. Though not written for liturgical services, the music proved to be inspirational to listeners, particularly Roman Catholics, and a Latin text was substituted to make it suitable for use in church. It is today most widely known in its Latin “Ave Maria” form.” (taken from Song Facts)
- Franz Schubert’s inspiration:
” Franz Schubert’s inspiration was the epic poem of Sir Walter Scott, The Lady of the Lake, written in 1810. The poem tells the fictional tale of 16th century Scottish clans at war with each other and in rebellion against the king. Schubert wrote a cycle of seven songs based on the story, using the German translation of the poem by Philip Adam Storck.
The heroine of the poem is Ellen Douglas who has fled with her exiled father to a mountain cave to escape the pursuit of a rebel chieftain. While in the cave, Ellen sings a song praying to the Virgin Mary for help, accompanied by the harper Allan-bane.
This is in part the original text of Sir Walter Scott:
Ave Maria ! maiden mild !
Listen to a maiden’s prayer !
Thou canst hear though from the wild,
Thou canst save amid despair.
Safe may we sleep beneath thy care,
Though banished, outcast, and reviled—
Maiden ! hear a maiden’s prayer;
Mother, hear a suppliant child !
Ave Maria !” (Taken from the blog and harpist, Ann Sullivan)
Michael Lucarelli is a classical guitarist who has written compositions of his own. Having received his Bachelor of Music degree at the University of Utah, he now teaches guitar there. His Master’s degree was from the University of Arizona. Born in Ohio, Lucarelli studied with Peruvian Guitarist Ricardo Linares.
- Performance Location:
Michael Lucarelli plays Franz Schuberts’s Ave Maria on classical guitar. Filmed at “the Cathedral of the Madeleine” in Salt Lake City Utah. The Cathedral of the Madeleine is a Roman Catholic church in Salt Lake City, Utah, U.S.A. It was completed in 1909 and currently serves as the cathedral, or mother church, of the Diocese of Salt Lake City. The cathedral was built under the direction of Lawrence Scanlan, the first bishop of Salt Lake. (Wikipedia)
For your listening pleasure, Boyer Writes brings you Ave Maria performed by Michael Lucarelli Turn up sound.