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O Magnum Mysterium (Marlatt)

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Tomas Luis de Victoria

Tomas Luis de Victoria (arr. Marlatt)

General Info

Year: 2012
Duration: c. 3:20
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Eighth Note Publications
Cost: Score and Parts - $65.00   |   Score Only - $10.00


Full Score
Flute I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F
Trombone I-II-III
String Bass


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Skillfully adapted from the original, this most famous choral work is striking in this setting for winds alone. The expressive vocal lines are enhanced by the instrumental colors, further strengthened as the lines gradually build to a glorious ending.

- Program Note from publisher

This beautiful setting of the famous choral work is scored for winds only. Tomas Luis de Victoria is recognized as one of the most respected composers of sacred music in the late Renaissance, Filled with expressive lines, attractive harmonies, and effective dynamic contrasts, this expertly scored arrangement features interesting textures and colorful timbres throughout as it proceeds to a glorious finale. Ideal for showcasing an ensemble’s musicality, the piece requires attention to tone production and intonation at soft dynamic levels, proper balance and blend, and a consistent interpretation of legato style playing.

- Program Note from The Instrumentalist, May 2013, p. 42.

O Magnum Mysterium was published in 1572 in Venice as part of Victoria's first book of motets. It was dedicated to the Cardinal-Archbishop of Augsburg, Otto von Truchsess von Waldburg, who was Victoria's greatest supporter. The work features several characteristics of Victoria's style, which included an unusual amount of chromatic harmonies compared to his contemporaries and unusual and abrupt contrasts.

The Latin text of O Magnum Mysterium has been set by countless composers through the ages and speaks of the mystery of the birth of Christ.

O great mystery and
admirable (wonderful) sacrament
That animals see the Lord born
Lying in a manger.
Blessed virgin whose viscera (i.e. womb)
Were worthy to bear Lord Christ

-Literal English Translation

- Program Note from printed score arranged by Andrew Mast


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works


None discovered thus far.