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A Mass of Life

Composer: Delius Frederick

Instruments: Voice Soprano Alto Tenor Baritone Mixed chorus Orchestra

Tags: Secular cantatas Cantatas

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Complete Score PDF 13 MBComplete Score PDF 53 MBErster Teil, No.I PDF 5 MBErster Teil, No.II PDF 1 MBErster Teil, No.III PDF 12 MBErster Teil, No.IV PDF 1 MBErster Teil, No.V PDF 3 MBZweiter Teil: Auf den Bergen, No.I PDF 4 MBZweiter Teil: Auf den Bergen, No.II PDF 1 MBZweiter Teil: Auf den Bergen, No.III PDF 8 MBZweiter Teil: Auf den Bergen, No.IV PDF 4 MBZweiter Teil: Auf den Bergen, No.V PDF 2 MBZweiter Teil: Auf den Bergen, No.VI PDF 7 MB
A Mass of Life (German: Eine Messe des Lebens) is a cantata by English composer Frederick Delius, based on the German text of Friedrich Nietzsche's philosophical novel Thus Spoke Zarathustra (1883-1885). In 1898, Delius had written a male choir and orchestral setting of "Midnight Song" from the same work, and this was revised to form part of the Mass.
Delius, who was of German descent, chose for this work the German title Eine Messe des Lebens, having dropped the earlier title Lebensmesse because the German author Richard Dehmel asserted his copyright over the term Lebensmesse. The title Eine Messe des Lebens was used by Sir Thomas Beecham. who conducted the first complete performance of the work in London in 1909.
Eine Messe des Lebens is the largest of Delius's concert works, being written for four SATB soloists, double choir and orchestra. It was dedicated to Fritz Cassirer, who had had an important hand in choosing the passages from Nietzsche's text.
The work was completed in 1905. Part 2 was first performed in Munich in 1908, with a complete performance in London a year later.