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Dabaeva I.

Genre of communion anthem in the works of russian composers of the 19th – beginning 20th century

The article characterizes the works of Russian composers, whose genre defined as «communion anthem». The author provides the texts of communion anthems from the Psalter, reveals the place of this genre in Orthodox worship. The brevity of the text allows composers to repeat the words in their compositions many times. Often communion anthems consist of two sections: chant of the main text, and chant of the word «Hallelujah».
The article describes the history of the reduction and displacement of the communion anthem from the Liturgy by a spiritual concerto – a genre that was actively introduced into the structure of Orthodox worship. The secular nature of the spiritual concerto style had contributed to the fact that its performance was banned from the divine service, which encouraged the development of the communion anthem genre.
Many composers had turned to writing communion poems. Some of them created entire cycles in which a single style was maintained. The most voluminous is the cycle of N. Bakhmetev’s communion poems, which includes 29 chants.
Some communion poems are characterized by an increased degree of expression, a turn to the musical language, more characteristic for secular compositions. Among other examples are some of the songs from op. 25 by P. Chesnokov. However, not all anthems were intended for Church performance. At the beginning of the 20th century, during the period of activization of Church collectives performances in spiritual concertos many composers created compositions for concert halls.
Spiritual chants with the same names do not always belong to the same genre. The article notes that the composition of C. Cui «Rejoice in righteousness about the Lord» is not a Sabbath communion anthems, but a spiritual concerto, which is based on 5 verses from the Psalm 32. The musical language of this chant is typical for concert compositions.

Key words

сommunion anthem, Russian spiritual concerto, Liturgy, sacred music composers, Russian sacred music, genre.

For citation

Dabaeva I. Genre of communion anthem in the works of russian composers of the 19th – beginning 20th century // South-Russian musical anthology. 2019.N 4. PP. 71–76.