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Schubert: Mass No. 6 in E flat major ()

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When Schubert composed his last setting of the Roman Catholic Mass in the final year of his life, he was no longer a Catholic. Born in what was then known as the Holy Roman Empire, Schubert came of age in the post-Revolutionary era. After imbibing the Enlightenment's lucidity and humanity and Schubert's s own intimate encounter with mortality, Schubert fell out of sympathy with the Roman Church. Although Schubert tried in his final Mass to imbue the text with the same ecstatic energy of Beethoven's Missa Solemnis, the music sounds more ironic than ecstatic and more disingenuous than candid. As a result, Schubert's last Mass has been relatively rarely recorded and most of those recordings, no matter how grand and glorious, have always seemed somehow emotionally false.One cannot accuse Rafael Kubelik of being disingenuous. As this 1968 recording with the Bayerischen Rundfunks Sinfonie-orchester proves, Kubelik was always entirely, sincerely, and scrupulously honest. Even in his celebrated Mahler cycle... Hide synopsis

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