Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique Plays Beethoven

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Saturday, November 17, 2012

Sir John Eliot Gardiner leads the Orchestre Revolutionnaire et Romantique and Monteverdi Choir in Beethoven’s 'Missa Solemnis' at Carnegie Hall on Nov. 17, 2012. Sir John Eliot Gardiner leads the Orchestre Revolutionnaire et Romantique and Monteverdi Choir in Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis at Carnegie Hall on Nov. 17, 2012. (Melanie Burford for NPR)

The Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique, under the direction of John Eliot Gardiner, returns to Carnegie Hall for a performance of Beethoven's epic choral work Missa Solemnis.

The program, which also features the Monteverdi Choir, was broadcast on Saturday, Nov. 17 at 8 pm.

The broadcast follows last year's Carnegie Hall Live appearance by the ORR performing an all-Beethoven program and constitutes part of WQXR's Beethoven Awareness Month.


Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique
Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Artistic Director and Conductor
Elisabeth Meister, Soprano
Jennifer Johnston, Mezzo-Soprano
Michael Spyres, Tenor
Matthew Rose, Bass

Missa Solemnis in D Major, Op. 123

  1. Kyrie
  2. Gloria
  3. Credo
  4. Sanctus
  5. Benedictus
  6. Agnus Dei

Listen: John Eliot Gardiner considers why the Missa Solemnis is so rarely performed:

Listen: audience members try to pronounce the orchestra's mouthful of a name:

Below is an archive of the live chat conversation:

Comments [9]

Joel Stein from Massachusetts

Why does the announcer speak between sections? Is a moment of silence just too much for these people???

Dec. 17 2012 03:08 PM
Shawn from Kingston, NY

Responding to Daniel: Beethoven was more interested in the individual relationship between Godhead and man, as I believe either Jeff or Fred pointed out in the live broadcast. Beethoven dabbled in research of Eastern religions and prior musical settings by Handel, Palestrina, etc. He was a Catholic by baptism. His strict instructions for the Missa were for the musicians to have religious feelings invoked in them, perhaps along the lines of the individual relationship as mentioned before. Beethoven employs a lot of techniques to have the music describe the text, for example the words "descendit (descends)" the singers start out the phrase in a high notes and end lower. The Missa was supposed to have a practical purpose for the installation of his friend and patron Archduke Rudolph as Prince Archbishop but the work was not completed in time...by about 4 years. It is too large and too long to put as part of the actual mass today.

Nov. 19 2012 05:36 PM
Daniel Polowetzky from NYC

A wonderful performance! A question: Was Beethoven particularly religious or was the Mass by this time simply a format in which one would be expected to compose based on tradition?

My understanding was that Faure was a non-believer yet wrote his great Requiem.

I hardly imagine that Beethoven took the religious trappings of the Mass very seriously.

Nov. 19 2012 11:21 AM
Judith from Brookline, MA

To Kenneth Bennett Lane - Will you once, just once, please, post something that doesn't include a paean to yourself!

Nov. 19 2012 10:13 AM
Carol Luparella from Elmwood Park, NJ

What a wonderful performance! Thank you, WQXR, for broadcasting it!

Nov. 17 2012 09:28 PM

Any change that there might, howsoever briefly, be a recording of this online at any time in the future? I missed all but the last of it, alas.

Nov. 17 2012 09:26 PM
TONY from ct.


Nov. 17 2012 08:12 PM


Good catch! The concert and the live broadcast are on SATURDAY, Nov. 17.

Nov. 14 2012 10:56 AM


I am interested in listening to the Monteverdi Choir at Carnegie Hall. Your programming lists the broadcast as Friday, November 17th. Friday is November 16th--is the live broadcast Friday or Saturday?
Thank you.

Nov. 14 2012 10:05 AM

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