Jacek Szczurowski’s Missa Emmanuelis pro Sacra Nocte is a setting of the fixed parts of the Mass intended for the Midnight Mass. That particular Mass, celebrated on the night of 24 to 25 December, was also celebrated solemnly in Jesuit churches. The musical setting of the Midnight Mass referred to the gospel description of the Nativity through the abundant use of melodies, dance rhythms and chords associated with traditional folk music. The characteristic features of this type of repertoire included the considerable simplification of the harmonic layer, with the use of drones, three-note motifs, unison passages played by the whole ensemble and repetition. Szczurowski’s Missa Emmanuelis is a perfect example of the pastorella genre composed in the dance metre 6/8 with its dotted rhythms, brings to mind an Italian pastorale in siciliana style.
The work is available to download by this link.