Recording from 7.2.2021
W.A. Mozart (1756 - 1791)
Missa solemnis, C-Dur, KV 337
Mozart wrote the C major mass KV 337 in Salzburg in March 1780. The title “Missa solemnis”, which means “festive mass”, is slightly misleading. Mozart chose a large instrumentation for the mass – strings, organ, two oboes, two trombones, trumpets and kettle drum – however, all in all, it is a rather short mass composition, thus the title “Missa brevis et solemnis” might have been more accurate. The Kyrie is very dynamic and rich in texture. In the Gloria Mozart interweaves two solo voices with two “background vocals” from the choir, a fairly unusual combination. Here, as well as in the following Credo, Mozart demonstrates his masterly ability to change the atmospheric quality without changing the tempo or beat. After the Credo follow a short but powerful Sanctus and, in direct succession, the Hosanna, which is introduced by a soprano solo. The Benedictus in a-minor is characterized by its stern mood, while the Agnus Dei is colorful and extensive. It leads to a close-to symphonic finale, yet the mass ends with solo voices in a contemplative spirit.
Translation: Nora Tunkel
Recording from 25.12.2019
Joseph Haydn (1732 - 1809)
Mass in G-Major, Hob XXII:6
As we know through Haydn’s correspondence, a festive mass was celebrated every year on the name day of Haydn’s patron, Prince Nicolaus II. of Esterházy. Thus, Haydn’s G-major mass Hob. XXII:6, which was first performed on December 6, 1766, received the byname “Nicolaimesse”. Due to the festive occasion, the mass was written for a large orchestration: violins, viola, cello, bass, organ, oboes and horns; later, parts for trumpets and kettledrum were added. Most likely, Haydn wrote this composition under considerable time pressure, since some musical sections recur within other parts of the mass. The choir parts are simple, yet make use of the whole spectrum of each voice. The Kyrie is dominated by airy melodies and sonata-like characteristics, while the Gloria finishes with a short fugue. Solo parts for soprano and tenor were only included in the Gloria and Credo respectively. In the Benedictus the soprano dominates at first, before eventually the other parts join in. Translation: Nora Tunkel
Joseph Mayseder (1789-1863)
Mass in Eb-Major, op. 64
Joseph Mayseder was soloist in the orchestra of the Vienna Court Opera House and concertmaster of the Vienna Court Music Ensemble. He composed numerous violin virtuoso pieces as well as chamber music and his important late Mass in E minor, op. 64. The mass was written for mixed chorus, strings, bassoons, clarinets, horns, trumpets, trombones and kettle drum. It does not include the usual vocal solos, thus emphasizing the choir as a whole instead. The intimate Adagio of the Kyrie is followed by a Gloria in three parts: the Gloria and Quoniam are characterized by rapid staccato sixteenth-note figures in the violins, the Qui tollis (Larghetto) by a clarinet solo. The middle section of the three-parted Credo (Et incarnatus) is composed as a solemn Adagio; the atmospheric Sanctus in B major is followed by a short Benedictus in G major, which finally leads to the Agnus Dei in G minor and Dona nobis in E sharp major. The mass was first performed on June 18, 1848 at the Imperial Chapel and remained a popular part of the ensemble’s repertoire until 1940.
Translation: Nora Tunkel
Last movement of Joseph Haydn's Kaiserquartett.
This clip was recorded on 16th of October 2020 in the Imperial Court Chapel performed by the Auner Quartett, as part of the "Kultur Glaube Macht" (Culture Faith Power) concert cycle.