March 9, 1884
March 4 was celebrated in the Grosser M usikvereinssaal in festive and solemn fashion with the " Missa Solemnis." To recapitulate Beethoven's colossal utterance in this work in mere words would be a vain endeavor. Exaltation. release, remorse, redemption — what do these words signify other than an attempt to provide the sensory perceptive faculty, insofar as possible, with an image appropriate to these concepts? But what can work upon our sensory perceptive faculties more tellingly than music? Whoever heard Beethoven's "Missa Solemnis," whoever felt it and understood it, was exalted, released, crushed, redeemed. It is the world religion, built upon the ritual text of Christianity and preached to redemption-hungry mortals. One whose faith in a divinity is as rock-firm as Beethoven's, as he trumpets his mighty credo into the world. stands exalted above all that is common, false, hypocritical in this earthly existence.
To have presented us with this gigantic work is the achievement of Hofkapellmeister Gericke. 1 and it cannot be acknowledged adequately. We have here an excellent example of how it is that outstanding accomplishment is not only a matter of talent alone, but may also he due to the circumstances that permit one to find and devote oneself to the field most propitious to his endowment and insight. One can, for example, be an excellent opera composer and yet write insignificant symphonies, vide L. Spohr. The symphony
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Book title: The Music Criticism of Hugo Wolf. Contributors: Henry Pleasants - Editor, Hugo Wolf - Author. Publisher: Holmes & Meier. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1978. Page number: 20.
This material is protected by copyright and, with the exception of fair use, may not be further copied, distributed or transmitted in any form or by any means.