About this blogger:
A theorist, organist, and conductor, Jeff Ostrowski holds his B.M. in Music Theory from the University of Kansas (2004), and did graduate work in Musicology. He serves as choirmaster for the new FSSP parish in Los Angeles, where he resides with his wife and children.
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“I grew up listening to Lessons & Carols from Cambridge and that was Advent-Christmas for me. Then I moved to Rome and discovered Rorate Masses, the Novena of the Immaculate Conception with the Tota Pulchra, the Christmas Novena, the O Antiphons, the Aspiciens, the Rorate Coeli, the Alma Redemptoris Mater: that's Advent for me now. I am glad to see seminarians all over the United States doing Lessons & Carols, but are they learning our ancient Roman traditions alongside a 20th-century Anglican one?”
— Rev. Christopher Smith

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How Many Syllables Does The Word "Catholic" Have?
published 4 March 2014 by Jeff Ostrowski

756 Hep HE ENGLISH LANGUAGE is pronounced differently in the various English-speaking countries: Ireland, South Africa, Singapore, New Zealand, and so forth. I have been receiving emails from my friends in England. They are unhappy with the way I set the word CATHOLIC.

I was taught by professors of Choral Methods a dictum similar to Franz Xavier Haberl’s famous one: Sing as you speak.

For example, when you sing ANGEL, don’t sing “ain-JELL.” Sing it how you say it: “AIN-juhll.”

I recently composed this setting of the Creed:

      * *  St. Felix Musical Creed — An easy setting for Choir & Congregation

To my ear, words like EVERY are only two syllables ( EV- 'RY ) not three. The same holds true for “Catholic,” as you can see here:

WHILE WE’RE ON THIS SUBJECT, certain words in English cause problems when they come at the end of a Psalm tone because they have an accented syllable followed by three (or even four!) unaccented syllables. Here are some examples:

TABERNACLE

IMPERISHABLE

PERSECUTORS

TESTIMONIES

SANCTUARY

COVETOUSNESS

FIGURATIVELY

YOUR FLOCK SETTLED IN IT

WONDERFULLY

PERSECUTING

SACRIFICES

CIRCUMSTANCES

If you have a word like GLORIOUSLY you can “cheat” by making it three syllables instead of four. The same can be done with HEAVEN — it can be two syllables or one.

ADDENDUM:

I heard a professional group sing “See – lebrity” for Celebrity. Frightful!

I heard a professional singers sing “Cruella Dee – vill” for Cruella de Vil. Terrible!