Memorare is an SSATBB motet composed on a widely-beloved Marian devotional prayer.  The music is closely responsive to the words, which, in a relatively short prayer, somehow seem to express the whole gamut of emotions in the life of faith: adoration, trust, penitence, doubt, desperation, assurance, and gratitude. A very fulfilling “sing” for advanced choirs.

A licensed copy is required for each member performing.




Written in 2010 in honor of Ted McAniff, a devout Catholic man who has accompanied many ailing people to the sacred site of Lourdes, the unfolding musical narrative of Memorare is also a pilgrimage of sorts, culminating in the “amen” – the “so be it” – at which point one can imagine long-sought mercy flowing forth: the miracle of healing.  The opening, downward-flowing motive on the word “memorare” that recurs throughout the piece was inspired by the beautiful blue folds of garments in the Renaissance painting “The Virgin in Prayer” by Sassoferrato.  The children of Ted McAniff commissioned the work, and the Los Angeles Master Chorale, led by Grant Gershon, sang the premiere performance of Memorare in December 2009.

Translation, from the Latin:

Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary,
never was it known
that anyone who fled to they protection,
implored thy help,
or sought thy intercession
was left unaided.

Inspired with this confidence,
to thee, O Virgin of Virgins and Mother, we fly;
to thee we do come;
before thee sinful and sorrowful we stand.

Do not, O Mother of the Word, despise our words,
but in thy mercy hear and answer us.  Amen.

The original Latin:

Memorare, o piisima Virgo Maria
non esse auditum a saeculo,
quemquam ad tua currentem praesidia,
tua implorantem auxilia,
tua petentem suffragia
esse derelictum.

Nos tali animati confidentia,
ad te, Virgo Virginum Mater, currimus;
ad te venimus;
coram to gementes peccatores assistimus.

Noli, Mater Verbi, verba nostra despicere,
sed audi propitia et exaudi.  Amen.

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SSATBB a cappella

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