Victoria’s Missa Gaudeamus
is based on a motet, Iubilate Deo omnis terra
, by Morales which was written in 1538 to celebrate the cessation of hostilities between Francis I and Charles V as a result of mediation by the Pope, Paul III, who persuaded them to meet and sign a treaty at Nice. In the motet and the Mass both composers make much use of the opening phrase of the introit Gaudeamus omnes—‘Let us all rejoice’—as a cantus firmus, upon which to build their music. Gaudeamus omnes
is a Mass Proper. Mass Propers are older forms of the Mass liturgy which vary according to the date and/or season of the liturgical calendar, and which can be interpolated between movements of the Mass Ordinary, the unvarying movements of the Mass as they were established in a later era.
from notes by Jon Dixon © 2009