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October 2017

Joseph Haydn, Theresienmesse

October 22 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 12 in B Flat Major “Theresienmesse” (Maria Theresa of Naples & Sicily), Hob.XXII:12 (1799) The Theresienmesse was composed by Joseph Haydn (b.Rohrau,1732; d.Vienna,1809) in the summer of 1799 as one of a series of six Masses requested annually by his patron, Prince Nikolaus II Esterhazy to celebrate the name-day (September 12, the Most Holy Name of Mary) of his wife, Princess Maria Hermenegild (1768-1845), at the Prince's chapel in Eisenstadt.  The autograph score of this Mass bears the simple…

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Ludwig van Beethoven, Mass in C

October 29 @ 10:00 am - 10:00 pm
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass in C Major, Op 86 (1807) Ludwig van Beethoven (b.Bonn1770; d.Vienna1827) composed his great masterpiece, the Mass in C in 1807 on a commission from Prince Nikolaus II Esterházy (reigned 1794-1833).  The commission was intended to revive a tradition established by Joseph Haydn to compose one Mass per year to celebrate the name day, September 12, the Most Holy Name of Mary, of the Prince's wife, Princess Maria Hermengild Esterházy.  With the failure of Haydn’s health in 1802 the…

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November 2017

W.A. Mozart, Requiem, K 626 ALL SOULS DAY

November 2 @ 7:30 pm
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 19 in D Minor “Requiem”, K 626 (1791) W.A. Mozart (1756-1791) wrote only two Masses on commission; the Waisenhaus Mass, when he was thirteen years old, and the Requiem, the last composition of his life. Count Franz Walsegg zu Stuppach, an aristocrat living in Stuppach Castle near Gloggnitz in the Neunkirchen district of Lower Austria, commissioned the Mass for his deceased wife in 1791. Pressed by his obligations to complete two operas, Die Zauberflote, K 620 (1791) and…

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Joseph Haydn, Nikolaimesse

November 5 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 6 in G Major, Missa Sancti Nicolai “Nikolaimesse” (Saint Nicholas Mass), Hob.XXII:6 (1772) According to American musicologist Jennifer More Glagov, the Missa Sancti Nicolai is the only early Mass of Joseph Haydn (b.Rohrau,1732; d.Vienna,1809) that can be directly connected to the Esterházy court. As the title suggests, it was most likely intended for the Feast of Saint Nicholas on December 6, 1772, which was also the name day of Kapellmeister Haydn’s employer Prince Nicolaus I Esterházy (reigned 1762–1790). …

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Antonín Dvořák, Mass in D

November 12 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Antonín Dvořák (1841-1904) composed this famous Mass in D in 1887, originally for soloists, chorus and organ, but in 1892 he rescored the setting for full orchestra.   Dvorak was a practicing Catholic and composed a great deal of sacred music.   This Mass is one of his finest.  Inspired by medieval Czech hymns and melodies, the Mass in D was also influenced by Schubert and Beethoven.  The haunting melodies of this great work will stay with you long after Mass has…

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Mass in B-flat by Franz Schubert

November 19 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Born in Vienna on January 31, 1797, Franz Peter Schubert is the most Viennese of all the classical composers of church music. He wrote six Masses: F, G, B-flat, C, A-flat and E-flat. No nicknames were given them; perhaps the Austrians had used up all their nicknames on Haydn’s Masses. Schubert’s church music compositions are small in number compared to his output of songs, symphonies, keyboard, and operatic music. He was just 18 when, in November of 1815, he began…

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Joseph Haydn, Nelsonmesse

November 26 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 11 in D Minor,“Missa in Angustiis”('Mass in Time of Anxiety),“Nelsonmesse”(Nelson Mass), H. XXII:11 (1798) This Mass, composed by Joseph Haydn (b.Rohrau,1732; d.Vienna,1809) in 1798, has several names; Mass III (third of the six “Esterhazy” Masses); Imperial Nelson Mass; Missa in Angustiis (Mass in Time of Anxiety); and most commonly, the Nelsonmesse (Nelson Mass).  Haydn called it by its Latin title, Missa in Angustiis – a possible dual reference to the dire state of affairs between the Emperor of…

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December 2017

W.A. Mozart, Coronation Mass (Laetare Sunday)

December 24 @ 12:00 pm - December 25 @ 2:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 16 in C Major “Krönung” (Coronation), K 317 (1779) One story is that W.A. Mozart (b.Salzburg1756; d.Vienna1791) composed his Coronation Mass for the shrine of Maria Plain, a pilgrimage place on a hill overlooking the city of Salzburg, where an icon of the Blessed Mother and Child was crowned in 1751, indicating that it had been the place where a miracle had been performed through the intercession of the Mother of God. It was said that Mozart wrote…

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January 2018

W.A. Mozart, Piccolomini Mass, K 258

January 7, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 12, Missa Brevis No. 7 in C Major “Piccolomini”, K 258 (1776) The Piccolomini Mass by W. A. Mozart (b.Salzburg1756; d.Vienna1791) is a missa brevis (brief mass) designed to meet the time constraints required by Prince-Archbishop Count Hieronymus von Colloredo (reigned1771-1803) of Salzburg. This composition may have received its nickname from the Italian word, "piccolo" meaning "brief”, as a possible complement to the Missa Longa, K 262, composed during the same period. In the Piccolomini Mass Mozart continued to…

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W.A. Mozart, Mass in C, K 337

January 14, 2018 @ 5:15 pm
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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While seldom heard in concert halls and rarely recorded, this Mass composed in 1780 by W.A. Mozart (b.Salzburg1756: d.Vienna1791) nonetheless offers lovely, joyful music appropriate for liturgical use. Although titled, Missa Solemnis, its succinctness would qualify it as a missa brevis. The Credo, which lasts less than six minutes, is the second Credo Mozart composed for this Mass. He completed about two-thirds of the first Credo, up to non erit finis, and then put the piece aside. Some musicologists speculate that Mozart feared the first Credo was too theatrical…

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Charles Gounod, Messe Solennelle (Saint Cecilia Mass)

January 21, 2018 @ 10:00 am

Messe Solennelle de Sainte Cécile in G Major (Solemn Mass of Saint Cecilia) (1855) Composer Charles François Gounod (1818-1893) was a practicing Catholic and as a youth intended to become a priest. He eventually decided he was unsuited for the priesthood but expressed his devotion in numerous works of sacred music. After winning the Grand Prix de Rome in 1839, Gounod spent much of his time at the Sistine Chapel listening to and studying the works of sixteenth century masters.…

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Joseph Haydn, Kleine Orgelsolomesse

January 28, 2018 @ 10:00 am

Little Organ Solo Mass by Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) The Kleine Orgelmesse (Little Organ Solo Mass) was composed between 1775 and 1778.  Saint John of God (1495-1550) was the founder and patron saint of The Brothers Hospitaller who had one of their hospitals in Eisenstadt. It is officially titled the Missa Brevis Sancti Joannis de Deo in B-flat, honoring the founder. (They continue to serve the sick there and in numerous locations worldwide.) The Esterhazy royalty were the primary supporters…

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February 2018

W.A. Mozart, Missa Brevis in F, K 192

February 4, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 6, Missa Brevis No. 3 in F Major, K 192 (1774) This Mass was composed when Wolfgang Mozart (b.Salzburg1756; d.Vienna1791) was only 18.  It was completed in Salzburg, in June of 1774, while Mozart was in the employment of Prince-Archbishop Hieronymus Graf von Colloredo. Following his enthronement as Prince-Archbishop in 1772, the Count decreed that Masses – music and all – not last more than 45 minutes. This accounts for Mozart’s designation of eight of his Masses as…

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Franz Schubert, Mass in C

February 11, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Franz Schubert (b.Vienna1797; d.Vienna1828) composed his Mass in C in July of 1816.  Although he was only 19 years old, this was his fourth Mass and his 452nd musical composition, according to musicologist Otto Deutsch. A second Benedictus for this Mass was added much later and cataloged by Deutsch as D 961, but it is the original Benedictus that we will hear in this morning’s presentation. By the time of his death at age 31, Schubert had written almost 1,000…

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April 2018

W.A. Mozart, Spatzenmesse, K 220 (Ascension)

April 1, 2018 @ 10:00 am - 10:00 pm
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 10, Missa Brevis No. 5 in C Major “Spatzenmesse” (Sparrow Mass), K 220 (1776) The Spatzenmesse (Sparrow Mass) was composed in Salzburg by W. A. Mozart (b.1756Salzburg; d.Vienna1791) in 1776. The Mass is sometimes termed a Missa brevis et solemnis, because it is short and simple in structure as a Missa brevis, but festively scored like a Missa solemnis with brass and timpani in addition to soloists, strings and organ. It was first presented on Easter Sunday, April…

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J. Rheinberger, Mass in C

April 8, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass in C Major, Op. 169 (1892) Born in Liechtenstein, the son of the Treasurer of the Prince of Liechtenstein, Josef Rheinberger (b.1839 Vaduz; d.1901 Munich) gained recognition as an organist, composer and professor while at the Munich Conservatory.  In 1877 he obtained the rank of court conductor, a position that gave him responsibility for the music in the royal chapel of King Ludwig II of Bavaria, the “Mad King Ludwig” of Schloss Neuschwanstein fame.  He was later awarded an…

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Joseph Haydn, Harmoniemesse

April 15, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 14, Missa Solemnis in B-flat Major “Harmoniemesse” (Wind-band Mass), H. XXII:14 (1802) Composed in 1802, while Joseph Haydn (b.Rohrau,1732; d.Vienna,1809), was employed by Prince Nikolaus II Esterházy (reigned 1794-1833), the Harmoniemesse is the last of Haydn’s six great Masses (Paukenmesse, Heiligmesse, Nelsonmesse, Theresienmesse, Schöpfungsmesse, and Harmoniemesse), all of which are in the Chorale’s repertoire. It follows the completion of his symphonies and belongs to the period of the composition of his oratorios, The Creation, The Seasons, and The…

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Joseph Haydn, Grosse Orgelmesse

April 22, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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(Chorale Premier) Haydn's so-called Great Organ Solo Mass in E flat major is among those works by Joseph Haydn which early in its history enjoyed widespread dissemination. The E flat major Mass, with an unusual scoring including two English horns in the orchestra, was composed around 1770 during the first years of Haydn’s tenure as Music Director for the Court of Esterházy. Despite the readily playable, effective part for organ, employed prominently as a solo instrument in the piece, the…

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Franz Schubert, Mass in A-flat

April 29, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 5 in A-flat Major for Soloists, Chorus, Orchestra & Organ (Missa Solemnis), D.678 (1822) Franz Schubert (b.Vienna1797; d.Vienna1828) began composing this Missa Solemnis in 1819 at the age of 22. He completed it in 1822 but continued to revise it, and even recomposed entire sections, until the spring of 1826. Historians are not certain if this great Mass was performed in Schubert’s lifetime, because it remained unpublished for several years after his death. But like Beethoven, Schubert’s later…

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May 2018

Joseph Haydn, Mariazellermesse

May 6, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 8 in C Major: “Missa Cellensis”, “Mariazellermesse” (Mary in the Cell Mass) (H. XXII:8) (1782) Mariazell is a village in the province of Steiermark, where the Austrian national shrine, Mater Austriae, is located.  The name “Mariazell” means “Mary in the cell,” a reference to the cell of Brother Magnus, a Benedictine monk who carried a lime-tree wood statue of Mary to this site in 1157 and founded a chapel there. Ailing visitors who prayed before the statue reported…

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Charles Gounod, Messe Solennelle (Saint Cecilia Mass)

May 13, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Messe Solennelle de Sainte Cécile in G Major (Solemn Mass of Saint Cecilia) (1855) Composer Charles François Gounod (1818-1893) was a practicing Catholic and as a youth intended to become a priest. He eventually decided he was unsuited for the priesthood but expressed his devotion in numerous works of sacred music. After winning the Grand Prix de Rome in 1839, Gounod spent much of his time at the Sistine Chapel listening to and studying the works of sixteenth century masters.…

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Joseph Haydn, Heiligmesse (Pentecost)

May 20, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 9 in B-flat Major: 'Missa Sancti Bernardi von Offida', “Heiligmesse” (“Holy Mass”), H. XXII:10 (1796) After 30 years as assistant Kapellmeister and Kapellmeister at the Esterházy Palace, Joseph Haydn (b.Rohrau,1732; d.Vienna,1809) became a musical “free agent” at age 58 when his patron, Prince Nikolaus I Esterházy “The Magnificent” (reigned 1762-1790), died and Nikolaus’ son and successor, Prince Anton Esterházy (reigned 1790–1794), disbanded the palace orchestra.  Haydn, who had no duties, but who continued to receive the Kapellmeister salary,…

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W.A. Mozart, Trinitatis, K 167 (Trinity Sunday)

May 27, 2018 @ 10:00 am
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 7 in C Major “Missa in honorem Sanctissimae Trinitatis” (Trinitatis Mass), K 167 (1773)   W.A. Mozart (b.Salzburg1756; d.Vienna1791) composed the Missa in honorem Sanctissimae Trinitatis (K. 167) at age 17. He dated it June 1773 and possibly intended it for Trinity Sunday, which occurred on June 6 of that year. However, British musicologist, Stanley Sadie (193-2005), as well American musicologist Neal Zaslaw (1939- ), both suggested that Mozart composed this Mass for Salzburg’s beautiful Dreifaltigkeitskirche (Trinity Church)…

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June 2018

Franz Schubert, Mass in G (Corpus Christi)

June 3, 2018 @ 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Saint Agnes Church, 535 Lafond Ave
Saint Paul, MN 55103 United States
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Mass No. 2 in G Major, D 167 (1815) With this Mass composed by Franz Schubert (b Vienna 1797; d.Vienna 1828) in 1815, we experience his gift for lyric beauty and simplicity.  Although he was only 18 years old, this was his second Mass and his 167th musical composition, as cataloged by musicologist Otto Deutsch.  By the time of his death at age 31, Schubert had written at least 998 works, including more than 600 songs.  Franz Schubert was an accomplished…

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