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Mass for Baritone and Piano Michael David Golzmane

Mass for Baritone and Piano

Michael David Golzmane

Published June 28th 2013
ISBN : 9781470151119
Paperback
74 pages
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 About the Book 

This work originally started as a sort of musical joke or basic sketch while I was in college studying composition in 1996. I wrote the piece for a baritone singer friend of mine (now Fr. Stephan Baljian, the person to whom this piece isMoreThis work originally started as a sort of musical joke or basic sketch while I was in college studying composition in 1996. I wrote the piece for a baritone singer friend of mine (now Fr. Stephan Baljian, the person to whom this piece is dedicated), as we both studied music at UMass/Amherst. I wrote several short movements (no longer than 5-10 bars each) for a Kyrie Eleison, a Christe Eleison, another Kyrie, and a Gloria. I had in mind the Organ Masses of Haydn, which provided utility in his day, as well as themselves poking fun at the stuffiness of the church institution with their brevity and whimsy. I called my initial work a Missa Brevis, taking that notion to an extreme level with this ultra short work. In 2012, as I was looking through many of my old scores from college, I saw these short Mass movements, and thought to myself I should really finish this. Well, Im not the same person I was in 1996, and my inclination for how this work should be completed did not end up keeping the theme of Missa Brevis that I had started with some 16 years earlier. The 4 movements contained in this score were all completed very quickly in January and February 2012. Little did I know that my little Mass setting (which I started more as a joke back in 1996) would turn into a 70-page piece that takes 20 minutes to perform. After completing the first 4 movements of this piece, I started to hit a bit of a block.... perhaps it was Divine Guidance telling me leave well enough alone? For whatever reason, each time I would start trying to write the traditional final movement of most mass settings--the Agnus Dei--I would feel somehow that this additional, 5th movement was somehow making the work too long and was sort of anti-climactical, as the Agnus Dei is traditionally a more calming, reflective movement. I decided to leave the Mass as a 4-movement work, trusting that the demands I was making on both the baritone soloist and on the pianist were high enough in the 4-movement structure. The piece also feels more or less complete after the triple-forte ending of the Sanctus & Benedictus movement (movement #4). This piece is probably not at all appropriate for liturgical use, though in the right context, it might work that way. If you have any questions about this work, want to contact me for any reason, or want to report a performance, please email me at [email protected] Mass for Baritone & Piano is an incredibly intense, rip-roaring exploration of an ancient Latin (with some Greek) text that has been spoken or sung millions of times for many hundreds of years now by Catholics all over the world. Strangely though, not being Catholic myself, I dont see this work as a religious work per se, though it is spiritual in the sense that music itself can elevate and expand our consciousnesses if were open to it doing so. I am hoping that while fun might not be the word someone might use in approaching this piece, that the performers and audience alike will find the experience enjoyable, expressive, and emotionally charged. --Michael David Golzmane