by Sr Fidelis
When we looked at the “DO to DO” scale several weeks ago, we noted that the top line of the 4-line stave was DO, because that’s where the DO clef was located. The other notes fell in place in relation to the DO on the top line. But what happens if we put that DO clef on the next line down? It means that the names of the lines and spaces will be DIFFERENT than they were in the first example. This is one of the beauties of the relative system — If a chant tune contains several notes above DO, then by lowering the clef sign, the notes will be easier to read (because they will all be within the 4-line stave). Look below at the two examples, and try singing the DO to DO scale from each of them. Don’t be discouraged if this seems a bit technical. It will begin to make sense the more we look at some actual chants. (Keep familiarizing yourself with singing the DO scale using the Solfege names.)
When sung in Gregorian chant, the prayer of the church is supported by the best music there is for nourishing the soul, music which is also an artistic masterpiece.
– Dom Jacques Hourlier