The Holy Mass has been the inspiration for some of the most beautiful music ever written. Celebrated composers like Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert and Puccini have written Masses that are still performed to this day. In the modern era Igor Stravinsky, Leonard Bernstein and Dave Brubeck have composed Masses in the ongoing tradition that has embraced styles from Gregorian chant through baroque, classical and jazz.
And now bluegrass as well.
Carol Barnett and Marisha Chamberlain have written and recorded The World Beloved: A Bluegrass Mass, together with the VocalEssence Ensemble Singers and Minnesota-based bluegrass band Monroe Crossing. The style of the music is often more classical than bluegrass, but it is orchestrated for bluegrass instruments.
A CD of the Mass, along with several other American choral works, was released in November 2007 on Clarion Records, and a number of live performances are scheduled for this spring. It will be played in concert this coming weekend (3/8) in Appleton, WI and the following week (3/14) in Decorah, IA. On April 6 it will be performed in Minneapolis, MN and on May 18 in Washington, DC.