Saint Augustine’s Organbook

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by Gerald Near

List of Pieces

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Number Title
1 Jesu, dulcis memoria
2 Adoro te devote
3 Ave verum corpus
4 Requiem aeternam
5 In paradisum
6 Ave Maria
7 O sacrum convivium
8 Ave maris stella
9 Ubi caritas et amor
10 Ave colenda trinitas

Background and General Perspectives

The Saint Augustine's Organbook consists of ten preludes for organ based on Gregorian Chant melodies.

Performance Notes are given in the back of the score. In these notes, Near recommends gaining an understanding of the "musical sense" of Gregorian chant by listening to excellent recordings such as the Monks of Solesmes, available through Paraclete Press, and The Liber Cantualis, a 1983 publication of St. Peter's Abbey, Solesmes. He also indicates that "Capturing the sense of rhythmic flexibility inherent in Gregorian chant melodies is really the key to performing these organ pieces based upon them. A rigidly metronomic approach is at all times the wrong approach.....In particular performers should be aware of a slight rhythmic "give-and-take" between phrases."[1]

Scores and Editions

The Service Playing exam requires the use of Aureole Edition, AE 86, distributed by MorningStar Music.


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Other Resources

The Church Music Association of America published a translation (2010) of Dom Saulnier’s book (2003), Gregorian Chant: A Guide, translated by Edward Schaefer. This book discusses the history, the liturgy, the chant of the psalms, the office, the proper of the mass, the other chants, and the manuscripts. It is a valuable resource for those desiring to learn more about Gregorian Chant and can be found online here.


  1. Near, Gerald. Performance Notes from Saint Augustine's Organbook: Ten Preludes on Gregorian Chant Melodies for Organ.

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