Classical Gilbert Podcast - Ave Maria - Schubert - Gounod - Holst - Liszt - Faure - Verdi

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Franz Schubert

Ave Maria is a piece for voice and piano composed by Schubert in 1825. Originally written as part of his Op. 52, a setting of seven song from Walter Scott's epic poem The Lady of the Lake (loosely translated into German), the piece was called Ellens Gesang III, Op. 52, No. 6 (catalogued as D. 839). The fact that the opening lyrics are Ave Maria may have led Schubert to revise the text as a religious song, and in that form it became widely known. Nowadays it is commonly performed at wedding ceremonies.

Charles Gounod

Ave Maria is a popular and much-recorded setting of the Latin text Ave Maria, originally published in 1853 as Méditation sur le Premier Prélude de Piano de J.S. Bach. The piece consists of a melody by Charles Gounod especially designed to be superimposed over the Prelude no. 1 in C major, BWV 846, written some 137 years earlier by Johann Sebastian Bach. Alongside Schubert's Ave Maria, it has become a fixture at wedding masses and funerals. There are many different instrumental arrangements including for violin and guitar, string quartet, piano solo and cello.

Gustav Holst

Gustav Holst's Ave Maria, Op. 9b is a piece for unaccompanied female chorus (SSAA-SSAA) composed by Gustav Holst, and first published in 1900. The composer dedicated this piece to the memory his mother.

Franz Liszt

Ave Maria I, S. 20 is a sacred hymn composed by Franz Liszt in 1846. He later wrote a second version of the piece in 1852. The first version is in the key of B-flat major, and the second in A major. The first version is scored for mixed chorus (SSATTB) and organ (ad lib.), and the second is written for mixed chorus (SSTB) and organ.

Gabriel Faure

2 Songs, Op. 67 is a set of two Marian religious songs (Salve Regina and Ave Maria), composed by Gabriel Fauré in 1895.

Giuseppe Verdi

In the twilight of his life, Giuseppe Verdi published a heterogeneous collection of four pieces entitled the Quattro pezzi sacri. Composed over perhaps eight years prior to their publication, they reveal the eyes of Italy's most famous opera composer looking toward the afterlife through the sacred texts of the Catholic church.

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