Musical Borrowing
An Annotated Bibliography

Individual record

[+] Flanagan, David. "Some Aspects of the Sixteenth-Century Parody Mass in England." The Music Review 48 (February 1988): 1-11.

Although the parody mass never attained the same importance in England as it did elsewhere in Europe, English composers of the early sixteenth century were aware of parody techniques. Three masses in the Peterhouse part-books, Missa O bone Jesu by Robert Fayrfax, Missa Salve intemerata by Thomas Tallis, and Missa Mater Christi by John Taverner, each borrow polyphonic material from a votive antiphon by the composer of the mass. The use of parody technique, rather than being motivated by liturgical considerations, may have been prompted by a desire to be free of the demands of specific liturgical connections. Contrary to their Continental colleagues, Tudor composers tended to transfer borrowed material more or less intact, making only those rhythmic alterations necessary for the declamation of another text. In Tavener's mass, however, the reworking is more extensive than has been thought. More than half of it is freshly composed, while only about a quarter of Tallis's mass is new material. Since Fayrfax, Taverner, and Tallis based these masses on models of their own composition, their choice of models was not motivated by the desire to pay homage to another composer. Taverner's influence, on the other hand, was manifested in works by composers who followed him, even as late as William Byrd, through the employment of compositional techniques that Taverner had used in his parody masses.

Works: Rasar: Missa Christe Jesu; Fayrfax: Missa O bone Jesu; Tallis: Missa salve intemerata,Strene Mass; Taverner: Missa Mater Christi, Western Wind Mass, Small Devotion Mass (or Sancte Wilhelme Mass), Meane Mass, Playnsong Mass; Tye: Western Wind Mass, Enge bone Mass, Meane Mass; Shepperd: Western Wind Mass, Frances Mass.

Index Classifications: 1500s

Contributed by: Mirna Polzovic

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Musical Borrowing and Reworking - - 2024
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