Gioachino ROSSINI

Rossini, Petite messe solennelle

New Facsimile from the Fondazione Rossini Pesaro
Fondazione Rossini Pesaro
of the original MS preserved in the

Tempietto Rossianiano, Palazzo Olivieri


Petite messe solennelle
Facsimile del manoscritto / Facsimile of the Manuscript

  Fondazione Rossini, Pesaro, 2011
Oblong format: 37.5 x 29.5 cm
viii, 252 pp

Full-color reproduction of the original 1863 autograph including the separate parts for harmonium and second piano. Rossini composed two versions of this work, the first (reproduced here in facsimile) for “Twelve singers of three sexes, men, women and castrati... that is, eight for the choir, four soloists, in all twelve cherubim”. The Petite Messe solennelle was dedicated to the Contessa Louise Pillet-Will (the count and countess were close friends of Rossini),  and the first performance inaugurated the splendid new residence that the count had commissioned in Paris. The use of two pianos and harmonium may at first seem odd but given its context as a salon piece is appropriate. Rossini composed hardly at all in the period 1829 to 1855 but after returning to Paris in 1855 wrote quite a few works for private audiences. He wittingly referred to them as Péchés de vieillesse (‘sins of old age’), and wrote in the score of the Petite messe solennelle “Good God – behold completed this poor little Mass – is it indeed music for the blest [‘musique Sacrée’] that I have just written, or just some blessed music [‘Sacrée musique’]? Thou knowest well, I was born for comic opera. A little science, a little heart, that is all. So bless Thee and grant me Paradise! G Rossini – Passy 1863”. Limited edition of 310 copies bound in dark-brown linen with matching slipcase.

Rossini, Petite messe solennelle, cover

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