Bach's Mass in B minor: An Analytical Study of Parody Movements and their Function in the Large-Scale Architectural Design of the Mass Showing 1-4 of 203 pages in this thesis. Sometime between 1742-45, Bach composed the second major section of his B-Minor mass, the Symbolum Nicenum, which contains the Credo. The playing of the orchestra is little short of sublime — the trumpets are exquisite, the solo winds superb, and the strings have a sweetness of tone that until recently could not have been found in a period-instrument group. It's one of several instances in the music of Johann Sebastian Bach … hide caption. The last major addition was the Credo; the keystone to the whole archlike structure, and itself a wonderfully symmetrical arch, it was written in 1748-49. The Mass in B Minor is arguably Bach's greatest single work. It is possible that he only intended that parts of the Massbe used when appropriate. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. The Mass in B Minor is not merely a compilation of “Bach’s Greatest Hits.” On the contrary, Bach was eager to combine the movements in a way that bridged gaps between the old and the new. Neither are there any rules about the number of movements. Sections that were specifically composed to complete the Mass in the late 1740s include the "Et incarnatus est" part of the Credo. Conductor Philippe Herreweghe has a special way with voices, and in this 1996 recording — a beautifully paced and coherent realization of the score — he does it again, drawing exceptionally expressive singing from a chorus of 23. The piece you will hear today is in fact not what was intended by the word A wonderful question which, I’d argue, admits of no single answer. One important feature in this process involved reworking each part to conform to a specific architectural plan for the Mass. For his setting of the Agnus Dei Bach chose an alto solo whose key of G minor introduces a flat sign to the mass for the first time. The entire mass is centered on these two keys. The Mass of 1733 The length of the Mass in B minor precludes it being sung in its entirety in a church service. Bach (Eisenach 1685–Leipzig 1750) never wrote a Mass in B minor. Heads-Up on New B minor Mass Donald Satz wrote: I came across the information that Martin Perlman and his Boston Baroque group have recorded the B minor Mass and it will be released in the U.S. toward the end of this month. The Mass in B Minor is fraught with difficulties regarding its origin, and ambiguities concerning its function. It's one of several instances in the music of Johann Sebastian Bach in which a piece is created as an ideal type, rather than crafted for a practical use. Program notes on the B Minor Mass by Douglas Bush In 1817 the Swiss critic Hans-Georg Naegeli praised BachÍs Mass in B Minor as "the greatest work of music in all ages and of all people." In choral music: The mass Bach’s Mass in B Minor (1733–38) was a monument of the preceding Baroque era. https://www.britannica.com/topic/Mass-in-B-Minor, Johann Sebastian Bach: Instrumental works. For a full archive of NPR's Classical 50, click here. As such, it represents an attempt to both summarize the tradition of the mass in a single perfect specimen and leave a statement on the nature of sacred music as a bequest to the future. The Kyrie and Gloria are taken from a 1733 mass that Bach dedicated to the electoral court of Saxony at Dresden. Bach ïs Mass in B minor (BWV 232) is the synthesis of his life ïs work. The Mass in B minor is as lofty in design, scope and expression as anything written by the hand of man. Painted portrait of German composer and organist Johann Sebastian Bach. Bach never heard the work in its entirety, but it represents a collection of movements in diverse styles; the Mass in B minor transcends the inconsistency of its origins. Furthermore, the words of the Mass – unlike those of the cantatas – are universal rather than being a product of their time. PART ONE: Missa, consisting of Kyrie and Gloria. It was never intended to be performed as a whole within the liturgy, and its various movements date from different periods of Bach’s life. ... What are the instrumental forces of the Bach's B Minor Mass? Five-part choral writing is most in evidence, the… Mozart, too, derived…. The genesis of the Mass in B Minor—so admired for its colossal dimensions and encyclopedic stylistic variety—is actually a long history of separable parts. Though some may wish to qualify NaegeliÍs statement, the Mass … Although The Mass in B Minor is arguably Bach's greatest single work. J.S. Monographs on the Mass in B Minor: Butt, John: Bach's Mass in B Minor (Cambridge University Press, 1991) – an excellent overview of the history and style of this work. The vocal soloists are wonderful, especially the women led by Janet Baker. …“Kyrie” and “Gloria” of the Mass in B Minor, written in 1733, were also dedicated to the elector, but the rest of the Mass was not put together until Bach’s last years. Most of the work's component parts date from various times in Bach's long residence in Leipzig; they were assembled to form a complete mass only near the end of his life. Discography and Discussions of J.S. In the Dona nobis pacem Bach makes uses of the Gratias from the Gloria. Painted portrait of German composer and organist Johann Sebastian Bach. Bach's Vocal Work. Bach's Kyrie and Gloria were, diplomatically, acceptable equally to both faiths. When Bach assembled his B Minor Mass near the end of his life, he used some movements he had composed years earlier, adopted other movements from various cantatas, and wrote some new material. Quoted in Bach: Mass in B Minor, John Butt, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1991; The San Francisco Choral Society performed the Mass in B Minor by J.S. Bach first performed the Credo in 1786. Simone Dinnerstein Plays Bach Old And New. Bach's massive achievement in sacred music culminates in his Mass in B Minor, completed in 1749, the year before his death.A correspondingly massive body of literature discusses every facet of the Mass: its composition and compilation, its resulting coherence or incoherence, its Catholic or Protestant character, its wealth of symmetries and symbols secreted in the score. Master of Music (Music Theory), December 2005, 193 pp., 2 tables, 47 musical examples, references, 21 titles. Bach’s Mass in B Minor (1724–46), but neither was meant to accompany it. The Mass in B minor is as lofty in design, scope and expression as anything written by the hand of man. The Mass displays Bach ïs Hearing even the brooding Kyrie for the first time can be like having of a pair of jumper cables applied to the heart. Along with Klemperer's St. Matthew Passion, this recording was the summit of what he could do in Bach. Drawing on decades of composition, including what he considered to be the most thematically relevant of his great cantatas, Bach created a masterpiece designed to endure for the ages. These two movements would later form the opening of the B-Minor Mass. The Mass in B minor (German: h-Moll-Messe), BWV 232, is an extended setting of the Mass ordinary by Johann Sebastian Bach. This short guide considers the work from many angles, offering the reader basic information in a concise and accessible form. The traditional Catholic mass contains 5 major sections, while the movements in Bach's mass are grouped into 4 sections: Bach completed the Mass near the end of his life, between 1745 and 1750, the same period during which he composed such encyclopedic monuments as The Musical Offering and The Art of the Fugue. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. Hulton Archive/Getty Images Herreweghe's aim seems to be to approach the score with gentleness, almost detachment. In this way, Bach emphasises the expressive character of the movement and creates a counterweight to the otherwise predominant D major. The work of the soloists is wonderfully detailed, yet it avoids exaggeration. Five-part choral writing is most in evidence, the…, …of the “Crucifixus” of the Mass in B Minor, lent poignance to the verbal description of the burial of Christ by the musical device of a sudden modulation from B minor to a sharply contrasting new key, G major, that contained notes chromatic to the basic key. Though this statement may seem a bit extreme and particularly out of place in the present context, it is, strictly speaking, correct. Several movements of the Mass were anthologized from earlier compositions. How? The Symbolum Nicenum (Credo) section of Mass was performed in 1998. Such was the case when his son C.P.E. In this short guide John Butt considers the work from many angles offering the reader basic information in a concise and accessible form. Movement drawn from Cantata BWV 12 - Weinen, Klagen, Sagen, Zorgen Changing half notes to quarter notes. The structure of Bach's Mass in B Minor is based on the Roman Catholic mass text. Stauffer, George B.: Bach – The Mass in B Minor: The Great Catholic Mass (Yale University Press, 2003). Images used under Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License. This is EMI's curent remastering of Klemperer's classic B minor Mass from 1967. The complete B Minor Mass was first heard in Leipzig, Germany, in 1859. John Butt gives an absorbing account of the work's genesis, its … This movement is set in B minor, key of passive suffering, which will be balanced by the key of D major in later movements. Pérez Torres, René, Bach’s Mass in B minor: An Analytical Study of Parody Movements and their Function in the Large-Scale Architectural Design of the Mass. Your purchase helps support NPR programming. The composition was completed in 1749, the year before the composer's death, and was to a large extent based on earlier work, such as a Sanctus Bach had composed in 1724. The near capacity audience was enthusiastic in its response to the Australian National Academy of Music’s performance of the complete version of Johann Sebastian Bach’s great Mass in B minor at the Melbourne Recital Centre, calling back conductor Benjamin Bayl and the ten singers (British octet VOCES8 and guests Susannah Lawergren and Amy Moore) several times and cheering the … Although Bach compiled the music for this work in the last years of his life (1748-1749), most of the movements had been composed long before or were reworked from earlier pieces. Commentators stumble over each other to praise it, treating it like a St. Peter's of music for good reasons; the Mass in B minor positively crackles with energy, and almost everything that is good about Bach is found in it. Its movements are listed in a table with the scoring of voices and instruments, key, tempo marking, time signature and source. It was never intended to be performed as a whole within the liturgy, and its various movements date from different periods of Bach’s life. After an instrumental prelude, marked Largo, that features flute and oboe in a fugue, the … In the following descriptive notes, the origins of each movement are noted, where known. The movement numbering follows the Bärenreiter edition of the Neue Bach-Ausgabe, first in a consecutive numbering (NBA II), then in a numbering for the four individual parts (NBA I). As a musician, Bach loved to set himself challenges and meet them; each movement's sophisticated harmony and polyphony attest to … To oversimplify matters, let’s begin by pointing out that performance styles have changed in the past century. PDF Version Also Available for Download. However, Bach's organization of the 27 movements reflects his Protestant background. The work is scored for five vocal soloists, chorus and orchestra. It's a typically thoughtful view, and it results in an illuminating performance. The Mass in B Minor exemplifies Bach's prodigious musical talent both as an artist and a craftsman and as a philosopher concerned with studying the human condition. The work that became known to the world in the mid-19th century as the great B Minor Mass is one of the most remarkable creations of Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750). Bach in 2002 and 2007. Mass in B minor, BWV 232 (Bach, Johann Sebastian) Movements/Sections Mov'ts/Sec's: 4 parts Composition Year ... Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin (D-B): Mus.ms. On his visits to Dresden, Bach had won the regard of the Russian envoy, Hermann Karl, Reichsgraf (count)…, Bach’s Mass in B Minor (1733–38) was a monument of the preceding Baroque era. Bach never heard the Mass in B Minor performed in its entirety. 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