William Sterling

Music for the Mass

Music for the Mass – A Thousand Years of Choral Music

From its early origins in the Middle Ages, the Mass has inspired some of the greatest music by the greatest composers. This course examined the chronological development of the Mass and the Requiem by composers from the Middle Ages to the Present Day from countries all over Europe and the USA. The course started with an outline of how the standard sections of the Mass and Requiem gradually became accepted and what the Latin words mean. Over the course we listened to excerpts from many Masses and Requiems by composers as diverse as Perotin working at the newly completed Notre Dame in Paris to contemporaries such as Rutter and Jenkins. Along the way we heard how Catholic and Protestant composers contributed to the Mass. Among the composers studied were Byrd, Vivaldi, Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Bruckner, Brahms, Dvorak, Faure, Poulenc, Verdi and Britten.

I ran this course at Crayford Manor (Bexley College) October-December 2008.


Below is a spreadsheet listing some of the major works for the MAss that I created for the course.

Music for the Mass