The last one before Christmas.
All Bach B Minor Mass all the time!!
Looks like this will be a rehearsal where we just get right into the Bach. No fear – he said jokingly! Well, we have until March 9, 2014 to get ready for this challenging work.
Len started with notes and welcome. He made a point of stating he had received notes from the RCA band and they were very pleased with the concert on Friday, especially the O Magnum Mysterium.
He then went on to discuss the history of the piece. How it was the only complete Mass setting Bach wrote but there is no evidence that he ever heard the whole thing. It wasn’t done in full until over 100 years after he died. Len then discussed the RE history of the piece. How parts of it were don in the late 50’s with Richard Eaton then in 1973 and again in 1980. Len then directed it in 1994 and 2001.
Warm up second Kyrie which he said we didn’t do too badly for a first read.
Gratias animus tibi which ends up being a six part fugue when you include the trumpets.
Qui tollis peccata mundi.
Cum Sancto Spiritus which Len said was the hardest 20 pages of music Bach ever wrote. After we ran thru some of the first measures he stopped us and said “lets see if we can find our initial notes and try again.”
Break and notices. Len gave us 20 minutes which means it must be Christmas.
Credo. Which was Bach’s last written piece of the Mass. Part 2 is another fugue! Then parts 4, 5, 6 – in part 6 there is a line that belongs to the basses which can sometimes be done as a solo. Len said that we basses were going to do this as a group and then said “I believe very strongly in group therapy!”
We finished the Credo and were preparing to get ready for the next piece. Len said “take a drink everybody cause next is the Sanctus.” It’s relentless! Then he said that the purpose of today’s rehearsal was to give us a measure of what is in the piece.