Monday, February 24, 2014

Reviews of WLP Mass Settings: Your Turn!

Monday greetings on another frigid day here in Chicago!



We at WLP are looking for some feedback from those who have used some of our Mass settings in their parish. On Facebook, we just posted this notice:

MUSIC DIRECTORS AND PARISH MUSICIANS:
WLP needs your reviews! We'd like to hear from you regarding WLP Mass settings, specifically "Mass of Wisdom," "Mass of Redemption," "Mass of Saint Ann," "Missa Simplex," and "Mass for Our Lady." Post your review below, send us a personal message on Facebook, or email your review to wlpcs@jspaluch.com.

I know many who follow this blog have used some of these settings. Would you be so kind as to send us your own review? Just click on the link above and review away!

Thanks so much in advance.

Gotta sing. Gotta pray.

1 comment:

Sean Whelan said...

Thank you for this opportunity! Hopefully people have lent their opinions and that other publishers would do the same.

I have used Mass of Saint Ann here, and with great success. We are not an overly "contemporary" parish musically, and so used this setting more with organ than piano. When using piano, I approached it with a more relaxed feel than some might. The flute part is enjoyable, along with satisfying choral parts. The melodies are strong, tuneful, and memorable. The offering of two Gloria settings is appreciated! I would question the through-composed versions use of the "refrain" at the conclusion though as it somewhat defeats the intent. A friend crafted handbell parts for the Gloria, which I used successfully. Thank you for sharing the brass quintet arrangement by Rory Cooney. I would encourage a full brass arrangement for the rest of the Mass, along with a handbell edition.

Mass for Christian Unity: Wonderful! How amazingly fresh this setting is. I had never encountered the Gloria before, so hearing it on one of your cds took me aback - I thought it was a new creation. Proulx deftly arranged the piece, but the original harmonies and beautiful melody shine. This Mass was the flagship setting at our parish when it was originally published, and continued to be used with it's second revision. The third edition continues to lead us in the simpler seasons. While I understand this was meant to be a "simpler" setting, I dearly wish instrumental parts would be made available. I'm not an arranger, but I can hear a majestic brass/bell/timpani accomp. Introductions with organ/brass would also be very welcome. If these things were published, I know Mass for Christian Unity would find it's place here at festive occasions and one of the high liturgical seasons.

Mass of Redemption: I used this setting in three parishes prior to RM3. Soaring, but easy for the assembly. Satisfying instrumental parts, though a little light with choral harmonies, understandable however, as that was the goal. The addition of the EPfVNO was wonderful and certainly one of the better sung settings in a long while. I must comment though on the revised edition. I read Janco's comments on how he approached the new texts, and can appreciate his thoughts, but I think he missed the mark. Now into 3 years of the new text, revised settings that we have already used proved easy for people to re-learn. Mass of Creation and A Community Mass kept the same intros and melody lines as best they could, and people quickly adapted. The Memorial Acclamations for Redemption are not as easy as they once were. The glorious fanfare intro of the Holy was replaced by something less interesting. The through-composed Gloria was a good edition, but I lament the loss of the grand refrain-verse setting in the previous edition. It would have been good to have provided both Glorias, and kept the rest of the Mass as close to the original as possible. In addition, offering a more full choral arrangement would be welcomed as well.

Again, thank you for this opportunity to reflect on your settings!

Sean Whelan
Immaculate Conception Church
Traverse City, MI