Guadalupe, Virgen de los Indios|
(released August 1998) IAGOCD210
Tanya Moczygemba, alto, percussion
Covita Moroney, alto, guitar, percussion
Christopher Moroney, baritone
Lee P’Pool, tenor, percussion
Jody Noblett, tenor, flute, percussion
Paula Olsen, soprano
Extensive research has gone into recreating the music and rhythms of newly converted Christian Indians, inspired by the Virgin of Guadalupe. Many of the pieces, transcribed by various scholars from original cathedral archival manuscripts in Mexico and Guatemala, were written by native Aztec and Nahua composers (Don Hernando Franco, Tomás Pascual) of the 16th and 17th centuries. The works of Spanish and Mexican chapelmasters trained in the European style (Hernando Franco, Francisco López Capillas, Manuel de Zumaya) are also represented.
SAVAE’s use of pre-Columbian wind and percussion instruments is based on Aztec artwork and early paintings from the first days of the Conquest. These include a variety of huilacapitztli (clay ocarinas), wooden slat drum, tall drum, small clay drum, lajas (stones), rainsticks, rasp, and an assortment of rattles and shakers. Many of the rhythmic patterns and drumbeats used are adapted from notations found in a collection of Aztec songs entitled Cantares mexicanos. Dating back to 1551, these drum notations were written in Nahuatl in the form of onomatopoeiac syllables by Don Francisco Plácido, a Tepanec Indian noble from Atzcapotzalco, who according to legend was a composer of songs for the devotion of Guadalupe.
Guadalupe appeared to the devout Nahua Indian Juan Diego in December of 1531, ten years after Cortez’ conquest of Tenochitlan—Mexico City. The story of her appearance is recounted in great detail in the Nican Mopohua, the Aztec oral history of Guadalupe which was written down in Nahuatl by Don Antonio Valeriano sometime between 1540 and 1580. A bap tized Cath lic, Valeriano was a native of Atzcapotzalco and a learned scholar who served as governor of Mexico City for more than 35 years. It is said that Don Valeriano took down the miraculous story from Juan Diego himself.
The Nican Mopohua opens by setting the stage for the many miracles to come:
“Here it is recounted, set out in harmony, how quite recently, very miraculously there appeared the Ever Virgin Saint Mary—Mother of God and our queen—over at Tepeyac, known as Guadalupe. She first revealed herself to an Indian by the name of Juan Diego. After that, her sacred image appeared on Diego’s cloak in front of the Bishop Don Fray de Zumárraga. When ten years had passed since the conquering of the waters and hills of Mexico City; When arrow and shield lay still, each expanse of water and of hill was lulled into tranquility. Then there was a beginning. . .there was a burgeoning and a blossoming of believing in the truth of Him who causes life to go on, the true divinity, God Himself.”The Virgin appeared to Juan Diego on Tepeyac hill, the same sacred location where Aztecs had worshiped the god dess Tonantzin—which means “Our Mother.” Guadalupe’s appearance at Tepeyac foretold the fusion of two cultures, Spanish Catholic and Native American. Many have found their faith through this divine gesture of acceptance.
The performances on this recording attempt to capture the melding of the indigenous American and the colonial Spanish musical styles that began to fuse during the colonial period — the dawning of the American Hispanic culture. The music comes from cathedral archives throughout Latin America, and has been transcribed from the original manuscripts by various scholars.
Several of the pieces were com posed by Native Americans who had been converted to Christianity: the Guatamalan Tomás Pascual, and the Aztec noble Don Hernando Franco. Zumaya and Lopez Capillas are among the first Mexican-born composers to master the European styles. Our use of ancient Mexican percussion instruments, as well as re productions of pre-Columbian flutes, is based on Aztec artwork and early paintings from the first days of the Conquest.
Instruments used include the Aztec double flute, clay flute, small ocarina, log drum (teponatzli), tall drum (huehuetl), small clay drum, stones (lajas), rainstick, and an assortment of rattles and shakers. The rhythmic patterns used are adapted from Canticos mexicanos, written in the 16th century by the native Tepanec drummer and Tonantzin devotee, Don Francisco Plácido.
SAVAE wishes to thank Dr. Oscar García-Landois for providing us with Sheila Raney Baird’s transcriptions of the Santa Eulalia Manuscripts from Northwestern Guatemala — the source of Tomás Pascual’s work. Our heartfelt thanks to Director of Choral Activities at UT San Antonio, Dr. John Silantien, for introducing SAVAE (in 1989) to the choral repertoire of Colonial New Spain via Robert Stevenson’s Inter-American Music Review. We’d also like to thank Dr. Douglas Boyer for providing us with Mexican editions of colonial sacred music from the Mexico City cathedral.
1. Tomás Pascual (c.1595-1635) San Juan Ixcoy, Guatemala
2. Traditional Mexican manitas a la Virgen de Guadalupe
3. Tomás Pascual (c.1595-1635) San Juan Ixcoy, Guatemala
4. Aquestando tonceria*
5. Francisco López Capillas (c. 1608-1674) Mexico City
6. Don Antonio Valeriano (c. 1549-1605) Atzcaptzalco, Mexico
7. Tomás Pascual (c.1595-1635) San Juan Ixcoy, Guatemala
8. Tomás Pascual
9. Manuel de Zumaya (d. 1755) Mexico City
10. Tomás Pascual (c.1595-1635) San Juan Ixcoy, Guatemala
11. Don Antonio Valeriano (c. 1549-1605)
12. Tomás Pascual (c.1595-1635) San Juan Ixcoy, Guatemala
13. Traditional Alabanzas, Mexico City
14. Tomás Pascual (c.1595-1635) San Juan Ixcoy, Guatemala
15. Instrumental based on the melody In il huicac cihuapille by Don Hernando Franco Tepeyacac
16. Don Hernando Franco (c. 1522-1580) Tenochitlan (Mexico City), Mexico
17. Tomás Pascual (c.1595-1635) San Juan Ixcoy, Guatemala
18. Don Antonio Valeriano (c. 1549-1605) Atzcaptzalco, Mexico