Monday, August 05, 2013

Beethoven: Missa solemnis

"Although the composer himself never heard a complete performance and it was a long time before the Missa was performed regularly -- on account of its inordinate length and technical difficulty -- once it became known to the European public, it established itself as one of Beethoven's most admired and loved compositions. The immediate excuse for the Mass's inception was that on 24 April 1819, Beethoven's patron, Archduke Rudolph of Austria, was elevated to Cardinal and shortly thereafter, on 4 June, to the materially satisfying position of Archbishop of Olmütz. ... But the installation came and went, and Beethoven was not ready with the Mass. In fact, it had grown out of all its original proportions and was to become not only a huge, all-embracing affirmation of Beethoven's faith, written, as the autograph manuscript affirms, 'Von Herzen -- möge es wieder -- zu Herzen gehen' (From the heart -- may it go to the heart again), but also a kind of compendium of the Viennese classical Missa solemnis form ..." (CD notes by H. C. Robbins Landon).

View catalog record here!


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