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FALLEN ANGELS: Sacred + Profane Works (live excerpts)

by Cor Flammae

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Nurun A’la Nur from Qur’an 24:35 "Light upon Light"
So dark. So cold. So lonely. The longest night. The briefest light. Winter will wane. Light will grow. So bright. So warm. So holy.
The sprung spring breaks free! Songbirds thrill to winter’s end, blossoms flaunt their pink parade. Fragrant, warm air ghosts between crisp, bracing gusts, arousing new life, quickening lacy verdancy. In the flowing stream a lovely lily revels in the moon’s radiance, passionately petitioning her gaze. Daffodil, tulip, rose and bluebell rise up steaming, irrepressible, in ardent command, Clap, skip, dance. Kiss, caress. Sing, leap, love!
Quanti mercenarii in domo Patris mei abundant panibus, ego autem hic fame pereo, Surgam, et ibo ad Patrem meum et dicam ei: fac me sicut unum ex mercenariis tuis. How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will arise and go to my father and say to him: ‘Make me like one of your hired men.’
Rejoice in God, O ye Tongues; give the glory to the Lord, and the Lamb. Nations, and languages, and every Creature, in which is the breath of Life. Let man and beast appear before him, and magnify his name together. Let Nimrod, the mighty hunter, bind a Leopard to the altar, and consecrate his spear to the Lord. Let Ishmail dedicate a Tyger, and give praise for the liberty in which the Lord has let him at large. Let Balaam appear with an Ass, and bless the Lord his people and his creatures for a reward eternal. Let Daniel come forth with a Lion, and praise God with all his might through faith in Christ Jesus. Let Ithamar minister with a Chamois, and bless the name of Him that cloatheth the naked. Let Jakim with the Satyr bless God in the dance. Let David bless with the Bear–The beginning of victory to the Lord–to the Lord the perfection of excellence–Hallelujah from the heart of God, and from the hand of the artist inimitable, and from the echo of the heavenly harp in sweetness magnifical and mighty.
For I will consider my cat Jeoffry. For he is the servant of the living God, duly and daily serving him. For at the first glance of the glory of God in the East he worships in his way. For this is done by wreathing his body seven times round with elegant quickness. For he knows that God is his saviour. For God has bless’d him in the variety of his movements. For there is nothing sweeter than his peace when at rest. For I am possessed of a cat, surpassing in beauty, from whom I take occasion to bless Almighty God.
For the Mouse is a creature of great personal valour. For–this is a true case–Cat takes female mouse, Male mouse will not depart, but stands threat’ning and daring. ...If you will let her go, I will engage you, as prodigious a creature as you are. For the Mouse is a creature of great personal valour. For the Mouse is of an hospitable disposition.
For the flowers are great blessings. For the flowers have their angels, even the words of God’s creation. For the flower glorifies God and the root parries the adversary. For there is a language of flowers. For the flowers are peculiarly the poetry of Christ.
For I am under the same accusation with my Savior– For they said, he is besides himself. For the officers of the peace are at variance with me, and the watchman smites me with his staff. For Silly fellow! Silly fellow! is against me and belongeth neither to me nor to my family. For I am in twelve HARDSHIPS, but he that was born of a virgin shall deliver me out of all.
For H is a spirit and therefore he is God. For K is king and therefore he is God. For L is love and therefore he is God. For M is musick and therefore he is God. For the instruments are by their rhimes. For the Shawm rhimes are lawn fawn moon boon and the like. For the harp rhimes are sing ring string and the like. For the cymbal rhimes are bell well toll soul and the like. For the flute rhimes are tooth youth suit mute and the like. For the Bassoon rhimes are pass class and the like. For the dulcimer rhimes are grace place beat heat and the like. For the Clarinet rhimes are clean seen and the like. For the trumpet rhimes are sound bound soar more and the like. For the TRUMPET of God is a blessed intelligence and so are all the instruments in HEAVEN. For GOD the Father Almighty plays upon the HARP of stupendous magnitude and melody. For at that time malignity ceases and the devils themselves are at peace. For this time is perceptible to man by a remarkable stillness and serenity of soul. Hallelujah from the heart of God, and from the hand of the artist inimitable, and from the echo of the heavenly harp in sweetness magnifical and mighty.
O proles Hispaniae, pavor infidelium, nova lux Italiae Nobile depositum urbis Paduanae! Fer, Antoni, gratiae Christi patrocinium: Neprolapsis veniae tempus breve creditum defluat inane. O scion of Spain, blessed Anthony, hope of Italy treasure of the city of Padua! Grant forgiveness to the fallen: that their short period of grace will not pass in vain.
Kyrie eleison Christe eleison Kyrie eleison Lord have mercy Christ have mercy Lord have mercy
When no one listens To the quiet trees When no one notices The sun in the pool Where no one feels The first drop of rain Or sees the last star Or hails the first morning Of a giant world Where peace begins And rages end: One bird sits still Watching the work of God: One turning leaf, Two falling blossoms, Ten circles upon the pond. One cloud upon the hillside, Two shadows in the valley And the light strikes home. Now dawn commands the capture Of the tallest fortune, The surrender Of no less marvelous prize! Closer and clearer Than any wordy master, Thou inward Stranger Whom I have never seen, Deeper and cleaner Than the clamorous ocean, Seize up my silence Hold me in Thy Hand! Now act is waste And suffering undone Laws become prodigals Limits are torn down For envy has no property And passion is none. Look, the vast Light stands still Our cleanest Light is One!
Oh Shenandoah, I long to see you, Away, you rolling river. Oh Shenandoah, I long to hear you, Away, we’re bound away, across the wide Missouri. Oh Shenandoah, I’ll never leave you, Away, you rolling river. Oh Shenandoah, I’ll not deceive you, Away, we’re bound away, across the wide Missouri. ‘Tis seven long years since last I’ve seen you, Away, you rolling river. And seventy more I’ll promise to you, Away, we’re bound away, across the wide Missouri. The water is wide, I cannot cross o’er, And neither have I wings to fly, Give me a boat that can carry two, And both shall row, my love and I. Where love is planted, there it grows, It spreads its branches, like a tree, Love blooms in sweetness, like a rose, With such a grace you’ll never see. Oh love is handsome and love is kind, And love’s a jewel, when first it’s new, As love lives on, it grows refined, Like the blade of green, in the morning dew.
Kyrie eleison The wind blows hard against this mountainside Across the sea into my soul It reaches into where I cannot hide Setting my feet upon the road My heart is old, it holds my memories My body burns a gem-like flame Somewhere between the soul and soft machine Is where I find myself again Kyrie eleison down the road that I must travel Kyrie eleison through the darkness of the night Kyrie eleison where I’m going, will you follow? Kyrie eleison on a highway in the light When I was young, I thought of growing old Of what my life would mean to me Would I have followed down my chosen road Or only wished what I could be
. . . From this hour, freedom! From this hour I ordain myself loos’d of limits and imaginary lines, Going where I list, my own master, total and absolute, Listening to others, and considering well what they say, Pausing, searching, receiving, contemplating, Gently, but with undeniable will, divesting myself of the holds that would hold me . . .


Selections from Cor Flammae's July 17th, 2015 concert - sacred and profane works by queer composers.


released August 10, 2015

Guest Conductor 2015: Stephen Smith
Cover Photo: belle ancell photography


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Cor Flammae Vancouver, British Columbia

Cor Flammae is Vancouver's summer chorus of classically trained, queer singers, performing queer content. Composed from the ranks of the city's top-flight choral ensembles and singers, the choir seeks to reveal the hidden queer heritage often ignored in the conservative world of classical music. ... more

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