STLT#384, Alleluia

Yay! Another alleluia! Today’s is made better for two reasons:

First, my colleague and friend Amy Zucker Morgenstern wrote this in the comments for yesterday’s Alleluia:

The word doesn’t really mean “praise the lord.” It means “praise Yah,” one of the many Hebrew euphemisms for God, since God’s name is unpronounceable. Some of them do translate to Lord (the Hebrew Adon, particularly) but Yah really doesn’t. Hallel = praise, yah = that unnamable power we usually call God or Lord or The Holy One. Isn’t that great?

Second, the round is based on the Alleluia section of Mozart’s motet “Exsultate, jubilate” and is one of my favorite pieces from that era. Have a listen to the original piece, mastered here by Chinese-Australian soprano Shu Cheen Yu:

High praise indeed. (pun intended.)

The lyrics are simple. I hope you can follow along…

Alleluia, alleluia; alleluia, alleluia.
Alleluia, alleluia; alleluia, alleluia.
Alleluia, alleluia.

The round is simpler to sing, of course, with three parts more simply scored. But when it comes together… well, it isn’t Shu Cheen Yu, but it’s pretty joyful.

So – I can’t be the only one who sees Tom Hulce when I think Mozart, right? This motet doesn’t appear in the film or stage versions of Amadeus, but it’s still the image that came to mind.


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