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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

"Missa solemnis"

Vienna Boys' Choir, Choir of the Wiener Staatsoper, Choralschola of the Wiener Hofburgkapelle, Wiener Philharmoniker, Jordi Casals, Jeremy Joseph

Missa solemnis, C major, 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

Conductor: Jordi Casals
Organist: Jeremy Joseph
Choir: Wiener Sängerknaben, Choir of the Wiener Staatsoper and Choralschola of the Wiener Hofburgkapelle
Orchestra: Members of the Wiener Philharmoniker

 

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