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Universal Edition - Leoš Janáček – Glagolitic Mass

Leoš Janáček

Leoš Janáček
Glagolitic Mass

Year of composition: 1928
Version: final version
Scored for: for soloists, mixed choir, organ and orchestra
Composer: Leoš Janácek
Edited by: Paul Wingfield
Text Source: Ordinary of the Masses in Old Church Slavonic, "Cyril" and "Misi slavnije o bl. Marii deve i za umršeje obetnije slovenskim jezikom" transliterated by Josef Vajs; (1919/1920) and revised by Miloš Weingart.
Text Editor: Miloš Weingart
Original Language: Altkirchenslawisch
Translator: Malcolm Rayment; Rudolf Stephan Hoffmann; Rosa Newmarch
Choir: SSAATTBB
Soloists: soprano; alto; tenor; bass
Instrumentation: 4 3 3 3 - 4 4 3 1 - timp, perc(2), hp(2), cel, org, str
Instrumentation details:
1st flute
2nd flute (+ 3rd picc)
3rd flute (+ 1st picc)
4th flute (+ 2nd picc)
1st oboe
2nd oboe
cor anglais
1st clarinet in Bb
2nd clarinet in Bb
3rd clarinet in Bb (+ bass cl(Bb))
1st bassoon
2nd bassoon
3rd bassoon (+cbsn)
1st horn in F
2nd horn in F
3rd horn in F
4th horn in F
1st trumpet in F
2nd trumpet in F
3rd trumpet in F
4th trumpet in F
1st trombone
2nd trombone
3rd trombone
tuba
timpani
percussion (2 player)
1st harp
2nd harp
celesta
organ
violin I
violin II
viola
violoncello
contrabass
Duration: 45′
 
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Audio Excerpt

Glagolitische Messe

World Première

Location: Brno / Czech Republic
Date: 05.12.1927
Orchestra: Orchestra of the Brno National Theatre
Conductor: Kvapil Jaroslav
Main Soloists: Alexandra Cvanová, s, Marie Hloušková, a, Stanislav Tauber, t, Ladislav Nemecek, b, Bohumil Holub, org.

Work Introduction

1926 was a particularly successful and productive year for Leoš Janáček,who composed the opera The Makropulos Case, as well as Sinfonietta and the Glagolitic Mass, among other works.

Janáček wrote his Glagolitic Mass in just two and a half months, and it became one of the most important mass compositions. Distancing himself from all of the well trodden paths of the traditional genre, Janáček created a piece of sacred music that is so unique, it begs the question of whether it can be categorised as such at all. It can best be compared to Zoltán Kodály’s powerful Psalmus hungaricus. Instead of using Latin, Janáček based his piece on a ninth century text written in Glagolitic (Cyrillic) script – Old Church Slavonic. When committing his work to paper, Janáček said: “I want to show people how to talk to our dear Lord.” And he did so with a self-assurance that is a far cry from Catholic humility and contrition. His aim was to write a “joyful mass” because all of the masses composed thus far were so sad.

The composer was apparently forced to make major revisions during rehearsals for the mass’s première (5 Dec 1927) owing to a lack of instrumental resources and the limited rehearsal time available, and some additional questionable changes seem to have been made prior to the second performance in Prague (8 Apr 1928). Some of these revisions actually constitute cuts of music that ranks amongst the most arresting that Janáček ever wrote. To make matters worse, the composer died before the full score could be published. As a result, the edition of the work published after his death promulgated a score that is far less exciting and ambitious than the one Janáček originally composed.

After years of consulting various sources, the musicologist Paul Wingfield succeeded in reconstructing the original version. Sir Charles Mackerras then added valuable performance suggestions, after which this hitherto unknown version was presented to the public. The original final version was then subsequently revised, taking musicological and practical performance aspects into account. Performance material is available for both versions. Directors can choose their preferred version, each of which has its own merits. The Glagolitic Mass has also been published as part of the UE study score series (UE34298); an informative preface sets out the differences and similarities between the two versions, which can both be found in the study score.

Piano reduction – Glagolitic Mass

  • for soloists: soprano, alto, tenor, bass, choir satb, organ and orchestra
  • Edition type: piano reduction
  • Edition info: revised edition of 2010 Orchestra material on hire (Study score UE34298 for both editions)
  • Language: Old Church Slavonic
  • UE34336
  • ISBN: 978-3-7024-6876-7
  • ISMN: 979-0-008-08222-1
EUR 52,95

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Choral score – Glagolitic Mass

  • for soloists: soprano, alto, tenor, bass, choir satb, organ and orchestra
  • Edition type: choral score
  • Edition info: revised edition of 2010 Orchestra material on hire (Study score UE34298 for both editions)
  • Language: Old Church Slavonic
  • UE34337
  • ISBN: 978-3-7024-6878-1
  • ISMN: 979-0-008-08224-5
EUR 21,95

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Choral part – Glagolitic Mass

  • Soprano
  • Edition type: choral part
  • Language: Old Slavonic; German
  • UE9543A
  • ISBN: 978-3-7024-6485-1
  • ISMN: 979-0-008-03045-1
EUR 8,95

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Choral part – Glagolitic Mass

  • Alto
  • Edition type: choral part
  • Language: Old Slavonic; German
  • UE9543B
  • ISBN: 978-3-7024-6486-8
  • ISMN: 979-0-008-03046-8
EUR 8,95

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Choral part – Glagolitic Mass

  • Tenor
  • Edition type: choral part
  • Language: Old Slavonic; German
  • UE9543C
  • ISBN: 978-3-7024-6487-5
  • ISMN: 979-0-008-03047-5
EUR 8,95

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Choral part – Glagolitic Mass

  • Bass
  • Edition type: choral part
  • Language: Old Slavonic; German
  • UE9543D
  • ISBN: 978-3-7024-6488-2
  • ISMN: 979-0-008-03048-2
EUR 8,95

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Piano reduction – Glagolitic Mass

  • for soprano, alto, tenor and bass soloists and satb choir
  • Edition type: piano reduction
  • Language: Old Slavonic; German
  • UE9544
  • ISBN: 978-3-7024-1096-4
  • ISMN: 979-0-008-01710-0
EUR 42,95

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Piano reduction – Glagolitic Mass

  • for solists, mixed choir, organ and orchestra
  • Edition type: piano reduction
  • Language: English; Latin
  • UE9544A
  • ISBN: 978-3-7024-6489-9
  • ISMN: 979-0-008-01709-4
EUR 47,95

Prices incl. VAT plus shipping costs

Pay by credit card, PayPal and direct bank transfer (in some countries)


full score - Glagolitic Mass

Glagolitic Mass
  • for soloists, mixed choir, organ and orchestra
  • Edition type: full score
  • Language: Old Church Slavonic

full score - Glagolitic Mass

Glagolitic Mass
  • for soloists, mixed choir, organ and orchestra
  • Edition type: full score

Future Performances

26.07.2017 - Three Choirs Festival Series
Location: Worcester Cathedral, Worcester (GB), Orchestra: Philharmonia Orchestra, Conductor: Frank Beermann

Shipping costs

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Economy Airmail 6–10 working days EUR 9.95
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Economy Airmail 10–15 working days EUR 14.95
Standard Airmail 5–10 working days EUR 19.95

* While we send your music as quickly as possible (usually by the next day), we unfortunately do not have any influence on the time it takes your music to reach you. The further you are away from our warehouse in Germany, the longer your music will take to reach you. From experience, that can take a couple of weeks to the USA and three or even four to Asia and South America.