The Missa Tu es Petrus
is in six parts, set for SSATBB. It was first published in 1887 by Haberl on the basis of transcriptions he made from manuscript sources in the Vatican Library. This is a parody Mass based closely on Palestrina’s own motet for the Feast of St Peter and St Paul (published in Rome in his second book of motets in 1572), from which a great deal of the musical material of the Mass is drawn, in places reproducing more or less verbatim the notes of the motet, particularly in the opening of most of the main movements of the Mass. The motet, which precedes the Mass in the recording, is written in a bright major tonality, and has a very clear antiphonal structure in which constantly varying combinations of voices pass phrases of the text back and forth to great effect, giving the whole a wonderfully joyous and uplifting quality. The Mass embodies much similar music, adapted of course to the words of the Mass, but also introduces new music using a more fugal style, sometimes with extensive passages of figuration, which enriches and widens the scope of the Mass.
from notes by Jon Dixon © 2010