Music for Order of Christian Funerals

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Martin Foster
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Music for Order of Christian Funerals

Post by Martin Foster » Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:08 am

The Department for Christian Life and Worship is looking for musical settings of texts sung at funerals. This is to provide simple settings for use in parishes and to offer to publishers for inclusion in participation aids. In particular settings are sought for the Responsorial Psalm and the Gospel Acclamation for Lent. Chosen settings will be published anonymously and will also be freely available for downloading from the Liturgy Office website.

For full details see the Liturgy Office website.

We are having some problems with our website at present (3/12) - if you have difficulty downloading the details contact me directly.
Martin Foster

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Post by Merseysider » Fri Dec 17, 2004 12:01 am

Having read the small print, I'm rather uneasy about this project.
Composers must agree not to reveal their identities – some might prefer that.
The fee is just £25 – well, there's always the honour.
But the thing I find difficult is that composers also give all rights to the piece to the bishop's conference who are free to sell it to commercial publishers.

My living is from journalism. When I sign over rights, I receive a good payment – even then, I receive a small percentage from syndicated items. When I write a piece for a small fee or for the love of it, I retain all rights to my work.

Is the Liturgy Office asking for just a bit too much here?

What do the composers among us think?

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Post by mcb » Fri Dec 17, 2004 9:37 pm

Merseysider wrote:What do the composers among us think?

This one thinks that twenty-five quid is handsome enough for a piece of liturgical music! The sad fact is that it doesn't pay as well as journalism. My meagre handful of published pieces have brought in far less on average per item. (I have high hopes for the US market, mind! Two items due out next year. I won't keep you posted.)

So I'd take the twenty-five pounds before the Liturgy Office realise how generous their offer is. :)


(Shameless bid for post number 2000! :))

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Post by Merseysider » Sat Dec 18, 2004 10:11 am

mcb wrote:This one thinks that twenty-five quid is handsome enough

Except you'd make far more by publishing it yourself.

But it's not the fee that's irritating, it's the fact that you sign away all rights. Surely that's not right.

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Music for the order of Christian Funerals....

Post by VML » Sun Dec 19, 2004 10:43 pm

I would like to have a go at this, and I imagine there is an expectation somewhere that this music will actually be used in 'ordinary parishes.'

I wonder when is the right time to introduce the sung parts of a funeral Mass into the parish system. That's a clumsy way of putting it, but even tho' we have the newish books for use at funerals, with the sung dismissal etc., by the time I as MD have any input or contact with the family of the deceased, the music is chosen and our poor PP is not able to bring himself to tell them that even if CDs are dead easy :wink: to produce these days, they are not the ideal source of music for Mass and the music chosen may be rather unsuitable.

I was quite enthusiastic about setting one of the pieces, but lost heart when I was told on Friday that 'the family have chosen a couple of hymns, and the've got tapes for the rest.' Do you know that popular song about transportation for stealing corn, ' The fields of Athenry?' I am required to play that on CD as the recessional...

So my question is: How, in an ordinary parish where most of the choir are unable to come to funerals anyway, do you introduce the modern sung requiem? Yes, I often sing the psalm, and have recently had and Ave Maria and an Ave Verum, but because no one knows who will be the next family involved, it is not easy to enthuse the parish about preparation for it.

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Vox Americana
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Judging completed?

Post by Vox Americana » Thu Mar 03, 2005 2:53 pm

How did the competition go?
Did you have many entries?
When can we expect publication of this music?

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Publishing Music on the Internet

Post by sidvicius » Fri Apr 22, 2005 4:57 pm

May I suggest that the Liturgy Office take a look at and and see how they do it? I don't think that signing away one's rights to a piece of music for £25 is something many would be willing to do. Both these companys enable people to publish their music on the web, and possibly reach a wider audience than they would otherwise find.
Take particular note of the legal terms and conditions, which they seem to have sorted, although I'm no expert.
As a Finale Notepadâ„¢ user myself I have to admit that the Sibeliusâ„¢ web publishing looks a whole lot more professional, but the costs seem more serious also (15smackers a month isn't peanuts to everyone).


Post by Anonymous » Sat Oct 15, 2005 6:33 pm

nausea wrote:Check Proxy Professional (HTTP) is a special tool…

This post has been moderated. We don't allow advertising here, especially for non-related (in this case computer software) material!

Strike 1! Three strikes and you're out… 8)

Paul W

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Re: Judging completed?

Post by musicus » Wed Jan 25, 2006 11:04 pm

In March last year, Vox Americana wrote:How did the competition go?
Did you have many entries?
When can we expect publication of this music?

Any progress?
musicus - moderator, Liturgy Matters

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Post by organist » Thu Jan 26, 2006 4:57 am

Yes it is hard to introduce sung parts of the Mass at funerals. One idea would be to have a guidance leaflet perhaps accompanied by a tape or CD. Ideally one would form a "funeral choir" to give a lead. The most popular setting seems to be the Celtic liturgy which is gentle and reflective but they are not acclamations! The simple Latin plainchant requiem works well. I well remember my disappointment at a funeral attended by many Catenians (who love to sing especially the older ones who remember chant) being told that the family had only chosen 2 hymns. On another occasion I stuck out firmly that the deceased (a longstanding member of the choir) would have insisted on having the full Latin requiem. We did sing some of it! If I know the family, I ring up and put my oar in in a very gentle way and this is always appreciated. It's all about building repertoire and knowing your congregation. :roll:

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