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The new Paschal (Easter) CD 
“Christ is Risen” 
(Ancient Hymns of the Resurrection)

Thanks be to God!  It is a collection of ancient Christian hymns sung during the Pascha (Easter) season.  Many of these original melodies and texts are attributed to St. Romanos (6th c.), St. Andrew of Crete (7-8th c.), St. John of Damascus (7-8th c.), St. Cosmas of Maiuma (7-8th c.), St. Theodore the Studite (9th c.), St. Theophanes the Branded (9th c.), and St. Joseph the Hymnographer (9th c.) to name a few.  Some of these special melodies (Prosomia) are set to dozens of other texts throughout the year, as well, in the liturgical books.  They have only recently been metered and transcribed into English.
The music of the ancient Church of Christ was inherited from the worship of the synagogue and the temple in Jerusalem — primarily the Psalms of King David. The Church added its own hymns to this — often reflections on Christ's fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies and His work and ministry on this earth — and Christianity spread throughout the whole world. This music, based on the 8 modes or tones, also spread and became the basis for Gregorian chant in the West and later ancient Russian chant (Znamenny, Kievan, etc.). These modes or tones can still be heard in the various folk music of Europe and the middle East and were the basis for melodic themes in many of the classical composers, although several of these modes dropped out of use in the West. (For more see the “History of the development of ancient Christian hymns”.)

In recent times, this music has not been heard much in the West, as much of it is in Greek, Arabic or Slavonic and was written using the ancient music notation or neumes. There has been a considerable effort in recent years to transcibe this music into English. This CD — one of many — is offered in the hopes of making our ancient Christian heritage more readily available to the English speaking world.


“On the first day of the week” (Pascha morning):      
1) Come ye, take light, Plagal 1st Mode – Arabic, Greek & English
At midnight, as we gather in the darkness, in the tomb of Christ, the one light of Christ’s Resurrection descends and each of us – one by one – partakes of this light as it spreads throughout the whole Church.   6:30 
2) Thy Resurrection – Procession hymn, Plagal 2nd Mode
As the bell tolls for the years of Christ’s earthly life, we carry the Light of Christ’s Resurrection out into the darkness of this world – singing with the angels the joyous proclamation of Christ’s victory over death.   2:19 
3) Christ is risen from the dead – Apolytikia, Plagal 1st Mode
(sung in English, Arabic, & Greek)
At the Church doors, we hear the Gospel proclamation, “He is risen! He is not here!” And we respond with the joyous Paschal greeting, “Christ is risen!”   5:34 
4) Paschal Canon / Katavasia – Odes 1 & 3, 1st Mode
The stone of the tomb is rolled away and the Church doors are flung open as the empty tomb is flooded with light. Then, entering the Church, we sing the triumphant Paschal Canon, “It is the day of Resurrection,” as the Church is filled with sweet incense – the prayers of the saints.   1:52 
5) When they who were with Mary – Hypakoe, 4th Mode

6) Paschal Canon / Katavasia – Odes 4, 5 & 6, 1st Mode
7) Though Thou didst descend – Kontakion & Ikos (Orthros),
Plagal 4th Mode
8) Paschal Canon / Katavasia – Odes 7, 8 & 9, 1st Mode
9) When Thou hadst fallen asleep – Exapostilarion, 2nd Mode
10) Let God arise – Pascha Stichera, Plagal 1st Mode
11) It is the day of Resurrection – Pascha Doxasticon, Plagal 1st Mode
12) Though Thou didst descend – Kontakion, Plagal 4th Mode
13) The angel cried – Katavasia of 9th Ode, 1st Mode (Papadic)
(chanted instead of “It is Truly Right”)   2:57 
14) Partake ye of the Body of Christ – Communion Hymn, 
Plagal 1st Mode
15) Christ is risen from the dead – Slow Apolytikion, Plagal 1st Mode, 
(St. Anne’s Skete on Mt. Athos)
Bright Week Vespers (Sunday evening):      
16) What God is as great as our God? – Great Prokeimenon, 
Grave Mode   1:11 
17) Christ is risen from the dead – Greek Apolytikion, Plagal 1st Mode (St. John the Forerunner Greek Orthodox Monastery, Goldendale, WA)
And so we have the eighth day, the eternal day in Christ's new creation – the day of Resurrection  2:54 
Bright Friday – Life-giving Spring:      
18) From thine unfailing fount – Kontakion, 
Plagal 4th Mode – Prosomia “To thee, the Champion Leader”   1:21 
St. Thomas Sunday:      
19) O Lord, when the disciples concealed themselves – 1st Kathisma,
1st Mode – Prosomia “Although the stone was sealed”   1:00 
20) O Thomas, thou hast searched out – Exapostilaria, 
2nd Mode – Prosomia “Thou soughtest the heights”   1:40 
The Myrrhbearers’ Sunday:      
21) The noble Joseph – Apolytikia, 2nd Mode   1:23 
22) The women brought myrrh – Kathisma Hymn after Ode 3, 
2nd Mode – Prosomia “Thou soughtest the heights”   0:42 
23) Hearken, ye women - Exapostilarion, 2nd Mode, Original Melody   0:45 
24) Sion heard and was glad – Lord I have cried Stichera, 
4th Mode – Prosomia “Lord, when Thou didst ascend”   2:38 
25) When the feast had divinely attained – Kathisma Hymns after Ode 3, 
Plagal 4th Mode – Prosomia “By conceiving the Wisdom”   2:39 
26) The Divine Wisdom, Power & Peace – Praises Stichera, 
4th Mode – Prosomia “As one valiant”   2:43 
27) He that eateth My flesh - Communion Hymn, 1st Mode  2:10 
The Blind Man Sunday:      
28) Though gloomy sin hath rendered blind -- Exapostilarion, 
2nd Mode (same melody as Pascha Exapostilarion)   0:49 

Christ is Risen

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