About Ave Maria
When the Dominican Province of Saint Joseph built a House of Studies in Washington, D.C., at the start of the twentieth century, the friars wanted to dedicate the new foundation to the Blessed Virgin. Just over fifty years after the solemn proclamation of the dogma concerning Mary’s perpetual preservation from the stain of original sin, the Dominicans of the United States opened the Priory of the Immaculate Conception. Therefore, when we decided to record and produce a new album in 2014, we naturally decided to dedicate it to she who is the honor of our race, she who was conceived without sin.
Recorded in the beautiful acoustic of Washington’s Franciscan Monastery of the Holy Land, Ave Maria features chants for the Mass of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary and for Compline on Marian feasts. This recording creatively juxtaposes two sets of chants that are proper to the feast of the Immaculate Conception: the common chants for the Blessed Virgin Mary dating back to the medieval period and chants that were adapted or composed in the late nineteenth century for the new proper texts given to this feast after the proclamation of the dogma. Along with the medieval Mass, the schola sings the chants of Dominican Mass V, which has typically been reserved for celebrations honoring the Blessed Virgin Mary. For more information, see the album liner notes.
Enjoy this series of interviews with Dominican friars, as they speak about the album, reflect on their artistic vision and engage the theological depths of the sacred music sung by the schola cantorum of the Dominican House of Studies.