Beethoven Missa Solemnis

Beethoven was a true innovator and revolutionary. This piece is a beautiful work of art, and it’s even more impressive because Beethoven composed this when he was already deaf! The ringing chords at the beginning of the Kyrie gave off a grand and intense stature. Upon reading the text before listening to this piece, I was wondering how Beethoven could take four words and turn it into a ten minute long movement! While listening to it, I was astonished by the intricate vocal parts. The text states many Catholic beliefs. When the text reaches the point where Jesus is born of the Virgin Mary and becomes man, the music from the orchestra intensifies it very effectively by playing pianissimo. Overall, the orchestration was often heavy in parts but was nicely contrasted with lighter airy sections. There is so much variety in this composition, which constantly kept me interested.

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