SO SAD THAT YOU LEFT THIS WORLD SO YOUNG; WHAT SONGS YOU MUST HAVE LEFT UNSUNG.
Franz Joseph Haydn said of W.A. Mozart(1756-1791) to Leopold Mozart (his father):"I tell you before God and as an honest man, your son is the greatest composer I know in person or by name, he has taste, and in addition to that, the greatest knowledge of composition."
Between 1770 and 1773, Mozart made several visits to Italy which influenced him greatly in his writing of Church Music, for he encountered the music of Palestrina and Allegri et al , a tradition which extended back to those composers, but also included concerted church music in the modern or 'rococo' style. This style with its instrumental 'sinfonias' and florid vocal writing alternating with sober, seemingly archaic movements in the strict style was a mixture of austere and decorative settings and is very much alive in Mozart's Salzburg church music, notably the Vesper Psalms.
Mozart completed the Mass in C major,K317, in January, 1779. Many long-standing but probably erroneous explanations of the nickname 'Coronation Mass' have been put forth, but in fact, there is no real evidence for any of these ideas, so we don't know why, but it doesn't matter at all to us who love his music.
In his last two years at Salzburg Mozart wrote his 2 Vesper Cycles, one of which is 'Vesperae solennes de confessore' K339, in 1780; the liturgical texts are Psalms 109 to 112, Psalm 116 and the Magnificat canticle, each of these 6 parts ending with the doxology.
The Italian operatic tradition held mostly at bay in the Salzburg Masses and vespers had earliler poured forth at its most undiluted in the solo motet 'Exsultate, jubilate', K165. It was composed in 1773, and must surely rank as the most popular of Mozart's vocal work.
What an incredible genius this man was, and will forever be in the eyes of history; I always wonder what else would have come forth from this 'marvel'!?
For the most part, I do like the singing on this disc; especially the Choir, but Trevor Pinnock is a reliable name in the field of music, so one can trust what he puts together. His tempos suit me as does the overall interpretation of Mozart. The soloists are good; my preference is for the Soprano (Barbara Bonney); her rendition of 'Laudate Dominum' is superb. in fact , memorable. It's all enjoyable and well-done!