Schubert - Mass No 2 in G Major - Kyrie
Type of Spiritual Experience
The young Schubert first came to the attention of Antonio Salieri, then Vienna's leading musical authority, in 1804, when his vocal talent was recognized. In October 1808, he became a pupil at the Stadtkonvikt (Imperial Seminary) through a choir scholarship. At the Stadtkonvikt, he was introduced to the overtures and symphonies of Mozart, and the symphonies of Joseph Haydn and his younger brother Michael. His exposure to these and lesser works, combined with occasional visits to the opera, laid the foundation for a broader musical education. Schubert's friendship with Joseph von Spaun began at the Stadtkonvikt and lasted throughout his short life. In those early days, the financially well-off Spaun furnished the impoverished Schubert with much of his manuscript paper.
In the meantime, his genius began to show in his compositions. Schubert was occasionally permitted to lead the Stadtkonvikt's orchestra, and Salieri decided to start training him privately in music theory and even in composition. It was the first orchestra he wrote for, and he devoted much of the rest of his time at the Stadtkonvikt to composing chamber music, several songs, piano pieces and, more ambitiously, liturgical choral works in the form of a "Salve Regina" (D 27), a "Kyrie" (D 31), in addition to the unfinished "Octet for Winds" (D 72, said to commemorate the 1812 death of his mother), the cantata Wer ist groß? for male voices and orchestra (D 110, for his father's birthday in 1813), and his first symphony (D 82).
The Mass No. 2 in G major by Franz Schubert, D 167, was composed in 1815. He was by then 18 years old.
This is the best known of the three "shorter" mass compositions which Schubert composed between the more elaborate first and fifth masses. In addition, the later Deutsche Messe or German Mass, D 872, (an early Deutsche Singmesse) and the ultimate sixth mass would be longer.
The second mass, commonly referred to as "Schubert's Mass in G," was composed in less than a week (March 2 to 7, 1815), the year after his first mass had been successfully performed in Schubert's home parish.
For the entire time he wrote these pieces he was in love, a love that was unrequited.