Surge illuminare Jerusalem

Composer
Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina
Arranger
Lyricist
Liturgical
Difficulty
Moderate (Grades 4-6)
Duration
7 minutes
Genre
Other
Instrumentation
Choir
Instrumental parts
Not available

This fine motet of Palestrina presents something of a puzzle. In the print of 1575 only the first Pars is given - the second Pars was transcribed by Haberl but clearly belongs to the same piece. How the two halves became separated is a puzzle, but possibly the first section alone was composed first, and the second half later: the first section comprises the Capitulum (short reading) at Epiphany, whereas the whole text (Isaiah 60:1-6) is difficult to identify with any liturgical function. The motet is also unusual in being through-composed, rather than in the ABCB form which Palestrina adopted for many two-part pieces.

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