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Chapel Royal of St Peter ad Vincula, Tower of London

Wednesday 15 May 2024, 7pm
Chapel Royal of St Peter ad Vincula
Classical Connections - Pastoral Mass (Mozart) & Nelson Mass (Haydn).

The Chapel’s Spring Concert features music by the giants of the classical era in music – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Franz Joseph Haydn.
The programme offers two highly contrasting Mass settings. Mozart’s Missa Pastoralis (Pastoral Mass), written in 1770, was very popular in his own lifetime. Although composed when he was a mere teenager, the exuberance, joy and humour that characterised his later Mass settings is already clearly evident. Pastoral Masses - associated with Christmas - often took popular songs and folk tunes as their inspiration and this wonderfully individual work captures this essence as well as exhibiting the panache and ebullient personality of Mozart as a young man.

Haydn’s (so called) Nelson Mass could not be more different. Composed in 1798, the original title, Missa in angustiis - Mass in time of Distress, is apt for the present day. Brimming with Haydn’s prowess for musical drama, the Nelson Mass carries us through the full gamut of human experience, leading us on a sometimes very dark journey that ultimately celebrates the strength and resilience of the human spirit.

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