The World of Masses

Franz Liszt's Missa Choralis and a compilation of Mass texts from American composers

Friday, April 27, at 7:30 pm
St. Andrew's Cathedral, Honolulu, HI

Honolulu Symphony Chorus

The Oʻahu Choral Society presents an exciting venture into the world of Masses, featuring Franz Liszt's 19th Century masterpiece Missa Choralis and complemented by the fresh colors of a compilation of Mass texts from American composers including Leonard Bernstein, Samuel Barber, Karl Jenkins, and others. The Honolulu Symphony Chorus will be conducted by Esther S. Yoo and accompanied by John Renke, organist, and other musicians.

Liszt's Missa Choralis was written in 1865 during the period he was resident in Rome and took holy orders. This was in stark contrast to his life in the 1830s and 1840s, when he was constantly touring Europe, enjoying a flamboyant, raffish, womanizing lifestyle. His apparently abrupt transition from the worldly to the sacred puzzled many at the time and ever since. This Mass is essentially the simple expression of profound emotion, yet expressed in terms of wide ranging but subtle changes of tonality.

In contrast, Oʻahu Choral Society's Artistic Director Esther S. Yoo has assembled a Mass comprised of movements by 20th Century composers, in widely varied styles ranging from the exuberant Caribbean rhythms of Glenn McClure's Kyrie to the exquisite soaring spirituality of Samuel Barber’s Agnus Dei. Other featured composers include Paul Basler (Gloria, from Missa Kenya); Leonard Bernstein (Sanctus, from his Mass) and Karl Jenkins (Benedictus, from The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace).

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The World of Masses

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