Mstation Classical Reviews

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Thu, 01 Dec 2005

Mozart, Mass in C Minor

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Messe en ut mineur
Missa in C Minor, KV427
accentus, la chambre philharmonique
Emmanuel Krivine
LP, naive

Mozart had at one time developed a dislike for sacred works while he was under the yoke of the Prince-Archbishop of Saltzburg. He had been forced to limit the times to forty-five minutes for a Mass as well as cutting back on contrapuntal work so that the voices were simple and intelligible. This has been an age old battle in the Church with Roundheads of all ages adhering to simple-minded ideas of what the message might be. Soaring beauty meant and means nothing to them -- philistines!

At any rate, Mozart later wrote this Mass for his wife Costanze, and it is thought his new religiousity was prompted by her pious family, the Webers. Costanze also loved the fugue and so here we have a fugal Mass. Rather nice it is too. There are a few mysteries though. Why did it take so long? Why was it in C minor? C Minor is and was not your regular key for a celebratory piece. Was Wolfie being ironic? Was he actually saying something to the first Weber sister he proposed to who turned him down?

An extra treat is that period instruments are used and so we might get a better idea of just what it was that Mozart wrote, other than just tones. All in all, it's a first class performance. (Count K)

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