A Polyphonic Top Twenty

Polyphonic masterpieces – Music-for-Church-Choirs.com’s quick reference list for you. To print this page, press Ctrl-P, and to add it to your Favourites, press Ctrl-D.

** Palestrina: Reproaches


*** Josquin des Prez: Ave Maria (Marian feasts)

*** Byrd: Emendemus in melius (Ash Wednesday)

*** Victoria: O magnum mysterium (Christmas)

*** Croce: Laudans exultet gaudio (General and Joyful)

*** Sweelinck: Hodie Christus natus est (Christmas)

*** Philips: Tibi laus (Trinity)

*** Philips: Ave verum (Blessed Sacrament and Corpus Christi)

*** Palestrina: Surge, illuminare (Epiphany)

*** Byrd: Ave verum (Blessed Sacrament and Corpus Christi)

*** Palestrina: Missa Brevis


***** Gabrieli: Jubilate Deo (General and Joyful)

***** Victoria: Tenebrae Responsories (Holy Week)

***** Byrd: Mass for Five Voices

***** Victoria: Missa Trahe me, post te

***** Palestrina: Dextera Domini (Feasts associated with the Cross)

***** Allegri: Miserere (Holy Week)

***** Tallis: Lamentations (Holy Week)

***** Lassus: Peccavit David (Lent)

***** Anerio: Missa Pro defunctis (Masses for the dead)


Moderately Easy **

Moderately Difficult ***

Very Difficult *****

The Masses in the list are all suitable for festal occasions, with the exception of Anerio’s Missa pro defunctis.

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