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Camaldolese monks perform a new arrangement of “Tantum Ergo”

J-P Mauro - published on 07/28/17

Fr. Consiglio's guitar work is fleet and relaxing.

Father Cyprian Consiglio is a composer, musician, Camaldolese monk, and Catholic priest. He spent his early years as a secular musician, recording with rock and reggae bands until 1992, when he became a candidate of the Camaldolese Hermitage of the Immaculate Heart, in Big Sur, California.

He earned a master’s degree in theology from St. John Seminary in 1998 and was ordained a priest a few months later. For the past 15 years he has made a comparitive study of other religions.

Fr. Cyprian has recorded nearly a dozen albums of spiritual music both original songs and newly-arranged classics. He spends his time traveling to performances and teaching, or leading retreats on the topic of a Universal Call to Contemplation. He has written two books, one on this topic — Prayer in the Cave of the Heart: The Universal Call to Contemplation.

Fr. Cyprian is joined by his Camaldolese brother James Makil. Makil’s resonant voice and reverent style were perfect for recording this original setting of “Tantum Ergo.” The song is very stylized with a bit of a madrigal feel. Of course a madrigal would need more voices, but if you were to transcribe the guitar part for voice, you would hear something very reminiscent of Renaissance era composers.

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