That old chestnut, the Bortniansky № 5

Bortniansky is famous for two Cherubic Hymns. No. 7 is rightly famous for its ethereal qualities; there exist many professional recordings. The No. 5, on the other hand, is rarely recorded, but is widely used by small church choirs due to its ease of performance. Unfortunately, unless very sensitively handled, the Bortniansky No. 5 can come across as a choral waltz.

In most editions published in English, the hymn is scored for SATB. However, there exist pre-revolutionary Russian editions of this work that add a second tenor part. This part is interesting in that it sometimes dips below the bass part (it could more appropriately, perhaps, be dubbed a baritone part). It fills out the sound and makes the hymn sound a bit less texturally boring.

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