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New Mexico Symphonic Chorus: Languages I've sung in

Here is a list of all the different languages I've sung in while a member of the New Mexico Symphonic Chorus or its predecessor, the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra Chorus. In all those years, Roger Melone was our Fearless Leader.

There are two lists. The first is for “real,” natural languages. The second list enumerates invented languages. In each list I've given at least one example.

Natural languages

  1. English: Messiah, George Friedrich Handel.
  2. French: Trois chansons bretonnes, Henk Badings.
  3. German: Ein Deutsches Requiem, Johannes Brahms.
  4. Spanish: Missa Criolla, Ariel Ramírez.
  5. Latin: Requiem, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
  6. Greek: Requiem, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; just the words Kyrie eleison.
  7. Italian: “Va pensiero” from Nabucco, Giuseppe Verdi.
  8. Slavonic (Russian): All night vigil (Vespers), Sergei Rachmaninoff.
  9. Glagolitic: A Glagolitic Mass, Leoš Janáček. Glagolitic is an ancestor of modern Slavonic, still in use in liturgical contexts.
  10. Middle English: Lord of the Rings Symphony, Howard Shore. This language was used as a stand-in for the language of the Rohirrim, the horse-lords.
  11. Hebrew: Chichester Psalms, Leonard Bernstein.
  12. Lakota: Pauwau Symphony, Brent Michael Davids.
  13. Zulu: Medley from The Lion King, Hans Zimmer. Part of a Broadway Pops concert.

Invented languages

The first five are from Lord of the Rings Symphony by Howard Shore, and were invented by J.R.R. Tolkien.

  1. Quenya, or high Elvish.
  2. Sindarin, or low Elvish.
  3. Khuzdûl, the language of the dwarves.
  4. Adûnaic, the language of the Ringwraiths and the Ring inscription.
  5. Black Speech, the language of the orcs.
  6. La damnation de Faust by Hector Berlioz includes some words in the language of the demons, as they taunt Faust during his descent into hell. “Dif dif! Merondor! Eiskor!”

See also: New Mexico Symphonic Chorus: schedule and reviews
Previous: NMSC concert review: Honegger, “King David”
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John W. Shipman, john@nmt.edu
Last updated: 2012/11/02 05:56:17
URL: http://www.nmt.edu/~shipman/music/nmsc/languages.html