Here is an outstanding resource for Orthodox Liturgical Music, created by an American monastic.
When I was on pilgrimage at Archangel Michael Monastery in Canones NM in Autumn 2014, I recall being surprised by the compunctionate and familiar tones of some of the chants the brothers sang during Matins. Came to find out that one of them had been at St John of Shanghai & San Francisco Monastery in Manton CA, and brought with him a familiarity with the music on their beautiful CD, The Eyes of All Look to Thee with Hope.
So, when I recently happened across Monk Martin’s website, Orthodox Music, which includes sheet music for the hymns on the CD, plus much, much more, I was doubly intrigued. Not only do I long to return to Archangel Michael Monastery in New Mexico, but now I am even more desirous of making my first pilgrimage to All-Merciful Saviour Monastery on Vashon Island, from where Monk Martin hails.
Monk Martin’s website ministry, undertaken with the blessing of his abbot, is a unique example of how Orthodox Christian monasticism in America is helping to form and support Orthodox parish life. So much of our liturgical music, whether from the Byzantine or Slavic traditions, comes to us from monastic chant, often adapted/expanded from unison or two-part (melody and ison) to three or four part arrangements. Priests and choir directors are encouraged to explore the wide range of liturgical music available on Orthodox Music.
Monk Martin writes on his ‘About‘ page:
I began composing and arranging music for my monastic brotherhood after attending a Summer Institute at St. Vladimir’s seminary in 2002. Studying under such notable Orthodox choral musicians as Prof. David Drillock, Mark Bailey, Jessica Suchy-Pilalis helped to start this labor of love. The knowledge and wisdom they passed on to us students was invaluable.
My motivation was simple: a desire to have our daily monastic services singable and pleasing to the ear, without requiring many voices to pull it off. Monasticism in this country is, after all, in its infancy. Through the years, some of my arrangements and compositions have made their way into people’s homes and churches after the production of the CD, The Eyes of All Look to Thee with Hope. [Click on the title to order the physical CD, or for Digital downloads visit CD Baby.com]
Occasionally I get email requests for sheet music, because for a couple years my original web page for downloads has not been available. After a number of requests, I decided it was high time to make good on my promise to make things available online again.
With the blessing of my abbot, Fr. Tryphon, I’m making available a wide variety of music for download. All contributions are either original arrangements/settings or compositions.
I dedicate this web site to my dear friend, an inspiration, an encouragement and a kindred spirit: Maia Aprahamian. May her memory be eternal.
To learn more about our monastery, visit this link: All-Merciful Saviour Monastery.