Monday, April 27, 2009

Christos Anesti!

Again, a kala Pascha to my fellow Orthodox Christians!

As I have said, I am privileged to be a chanter in the Eastern Orthodox Communion. I am privileged to chant hymns which are so old, both in terms of musical style and also in text. The texts and the music are so inextricably linked unlike most of the music which comes out of modern expressions of Western Christianity which is painfully mediocre and stale with words that are so vapid and devoid of meaning that they may as well be put on pop radio stations.

Anyway, I look forward to this time of year if only to sing the Paschal Troparion: Christ is Risen from the dead, trampling down death by death and upon those in the tombs bestowing life!

So simple, yet so moving. And the melody to which we sing it is in this haunting plagal of the first tone (i.e. Tone 5). That can be heard in the video. The monks singing are from the Vatopaidi Monastery on Mt. Athos in Greece, one of 19 monasteries on that particular mountain which I hope to see sometime soon for my own spiritual edification. And to to be able to sing this hymn while under the dome ornate with a fresco of Christ, trampling upon the doors of Hades and lifting up our ancestors Adam and Eve from their tombs and giving them life instead of death, joy instead of sorrow, is nothing short, I am sure of amazing. So, enjoy.

Christos anesti! Alithos anesti!

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