O Salutaris with Incredible Stairwell Acoustics

When in doubt, use the stairwell

Five of us from the choir had the opportunity to take a trip and sing for Soprano’s brother’s wedding.  The plan was to warm up in the choir loft during the wedding rehearsal, but eventually it became clear that we could not get through everything while the rehearsal was going on.  What looked at first like an inconvenience turned into a felicitous occurrence when we discovered an unlikely venue: the stairwell.


What you just heard

This is the sound of a large, tall stairwell played by the voices of only five choristers:  two sopranos, one alto, one tenor, and one baritone.  Nor is this a professional recording with the latest in audio technology.  Our tenor recorded this on his iPad and only the following edits were made:

  • Cut the clip to just the 2 minute segment
  • Amplified by 3.5 db (not strictly necessary)
  • Converted from wav to m4a (to reduce the file size)

No other enhancements were performed.  No noise reduction.  No note correction.  No aftereffects.

Conclusion:  this stairwell has truly awesome acoustics.

O Salutaris

The hymn we sang was O Salutaris Hostia by Josquin des Prez.

O salutaris Hostia,
Quæ cæli pandis ostium:
Bella premunt hostilia,
Da robur, fer auxilium.
Uni trinoque Domino
Sit sempiterna gloria,
Qui vitam sine termino
Nobis donet in patria.

Sheet music is freely available at CPDL.  The only change we made was that the baritone sang mostly higher Gs rather than lower Gs.

About the featured image

The featured image is in the public domain.

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