Sunday, March 19, 2006

Bach's B minor mass

Welp. It's mass class getting the best of me. I'm listening to Bach's B minor mass just because right now. I'm a dork. I'm going to concentrate on the Gloria. The first part of the Gloria, Gloria in excelsis deo, is very regal and typically Baroque sounding. It is set with a small chamber orchestra and full chrous. This section goes right into the Et in terra pax, a much slower section. Still with full orchestra, but now in minor and without the bounce of the first section. The next section, Laudamus te, is a soprano solo. It is very full of ornaments, and very lively. The Gratias agimus tibi is parodied almost exactly from an earlier Bach chroale, (which I have sung!.) This is a beautiful sweeping choral setting. And speaking of parodies, almost the entire mass has been parodied. It's almost as if Bach was compling a greatest hits highlight mass. The Domine Deus is a pastoral sounding duet between soprano and tennor. This whole Gloria is an arch which points to the Domine Deus. It is interesting that Bach choose a simple little pastoral duet to be the center of his whole Gloria! The Qui tollis peccata mundi is sung by full chrous and is slow and beautifully cromatic. I love the flute soaring over the chrous. ahhh. nice touch Bach. The Qui sedes ad dextram Patris is an alto with oboe d'amore solo. It's very flowing and lovely. It has a lot of short little motives and the oboe and the alto weave in and out of each other. The Quiniom tu solis santus is a bass solo and very regal sounding. It has bassons and a coranet (I think...) This goes right into the Cum Sancto Spritu, which is very lively and pretty. It's full chrous again to end out the very long Gloria section.

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