An abbey of French Benedictine nuns is taking part in the largest recording project in history, bringing the complete Gregorian chant to the modern world and breathing new life into an extraordinary 1,200-year-old tradition.
Every day for three years, US musician John Anderson is recording the daily plainchant sung by a community of 45 nuns, who live in seclusion at the Abbey of Notre-Dame de Fidélité of Jouques, near Aix-en Provence in southern France.
He installed microphones in the abbey’s chapel, and at the end of each day the audio is uploaded to a remote drive, allowing the recording to take place without disrupting the sisters’ way of life.
The result is 7,000 hours of chants which make up the entire Gregorian repertoire, some of which have never been recorded before.
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