Ludwig van Beethoven (1770- 1877)

Perhaps his best-known sacred music are the Missa Solemnis and Christ on the Mount of Olives.
Beethoven “Missa Solemnis” DVD trailer narrated
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBeRvZ9rl-E
Missa Solemnis – John Nelson, narrator
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9SBGgaU7330
Missa Solemnis Benedictus
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f5cOfF9ZDAM&feature=related

Missa Solemnis – Sir Colin Davis
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=63sKnm-WJPE&feature=fvwrel
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wKUT8e8dyGc&feature=fvwrel
Christ on the Mount of Olives
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0JOC4CquEJU

“Hallelujah Chorus” from Christ on the Mount of Olives
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgUj63KV1bs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qTx3Wlr_kG8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVPQAqSAJlo

Mass in C Major
Kyrie
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1CXpiIiaceg
Gloria
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uYWiBaocqYI

 

 

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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 – 1791)

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 – 1791) is known to the world as the child piano prodigy  who was exploited by his father at age 5, entertaining royalty throughout Europe. He is also said to have been prodigious on violin and composing at the age of five.

Although he was to compose for only the next 30 years, his output is also prodigious.  Despite his popularity, he died a pauper.  The circumstances surrounding his death are mysterious in that he was commissioned by a an unknown person to write a Requiem Mass for the dead.  He had not finished before he died, but he was able to instruct a student to complete the task after his death.   Leaving no fund even for burial, he was buried in a common grave with other “un-notable commoners,” at an unidentified site.  There is little evidence to justify the notion of his rivalry with Salieri, a contemporary composer, but the movie in the latter part of the 20th century, Amadeus, suggests the rivalry as part of the mystery surrounding Mozart’s death.

Besides his numerous symphonies, operas, piano concerto’s and piano sonatas, he also wrote a number of masses. He was well-known,  for “Ave Verum Corpus.” a favorite of church choirs at least in the mid-20th century.

Ave Verum Corpus

Laudamus te – Renée Fleming

Et incarnatus est – Sandrine Piau

Magnificat

Great Mass in C Minor

Misa brevis en Do Mayor KV 220 – Kyrie y Gloria

Exsultate Jubilate
Kathleen Battle:

Alleluja from Exsultate Jubilate –
Cecilia Bartoli:

Requiem K 626 Latin Mass

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Franz Joseph Haydn (1732 – 1809)

Franz Joseph Haydn was born before the deaths of Bach and Handel. The Baroque era, generally reflected the manner and tastes of monarchical and aristocratic society.  It was highly embellished, harmonically organized and progressive with its characteristic circle of fifths, stately, formal, harmonically driven and its dynamics were  terraced. In the rococo period, embellishment lost its formality and stateliness and became mere frills. It did, however make a significant contribution at Mannheim. There, rather than dynamics in terraces, the “Mannheim crescendo” was introduced.

Franz Joseph Haydn (1732 – 1809) was born to a wheelwright and his wife in the small Austrian town of Rohrau. His family was financially poor but musically rich in heritage and environment. His parents recognized his musical talents by age 6. Rohrau offered few opportunities to develop that talent, so they made arrangements with a relative, Johann Matthias Frankh, who was a choirmaster in nearby Hainburg, to take Franz Joseph as an apprentice for musical training.  Franz Joseph lived with him and sang in his choir. There, Karl Georg Reutter, a choirmaster in Vienna, discovered him and his extraordinary voice. Reutter took him to Vienna, where Franz Joseph sang in his choir. As Franz Joseph’s voice was about to change, Reutter made plans that he be castrated to preserve his voiceas a castrati. However, his father learned of, and foiled, the plan.

When at age 15 his voice did change, he could no longer sing in the choir.  He then began to compose music. Soon, he became well known as a composer and was employed by the Eszterhazy Palace.  He was one of the last composers to be employed in the patronage system. He wrote an opera, Orlando Palladino, for which he was best known during his lifetime. At Eszterhazy he developed the musical form called the sonata allegro form, in which a theme is stated, followed by a secondary theme, usually contrasting with the primary theme; there is a middle developmental section in which the themes are broken apart into primary pieces, which are repeated and varied; and a final section as a recapitulation. For an excellent graphic representation of the form, see
https://www.google.com/search?q=sonata+allegro+form+chart&hl=en&tbo=u&tbm=isch&source=univ&sa=X&ei=w_erUODrEMfyyAGn3IDYCw&ved=0CDQQsAQ&biw=1103&bih=593 .

The sonata allegro form permitted the development of new extended sections of music, and Haydn used and developed that form to become known as “Papa Haydn,” composer of both the string quartet and the symphony. One of his more popular symphonies is the “Surprise Symphony.”

He married, but, given the instability of his childhood as he was moved from place to place, and not surprisingly with what we now know of bonding and attachment disorders, that marriage failed and they separated. It did not help that he married the sister of the woman that he really loved.

Haydn also wrote sacred music, including oratorio (e.g. The Creation), and the mass (e.g. the Nelson Mass). He was a close friend Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, who was 24 years his junior, and who died 19 years before his own death. He made two visits to London in the 1790s which influenced his “London period.”

Oratorios:
The Seven Last Words of Christ – in three parts:

The seven last words of Christ – instrumental version

The Creation
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jewwiy8lTSQ&feature=fvsr – part one
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZiaSFEH4gII – part two
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzJtanJ4SAc – part three
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=czeCjF_61l4&feature=relmfu – part four
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JpqByHQ7pxY&feature=fvsr – part five

Masses:
Nelson Mass

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