The Diocese of Des Moines
The Mass: Live and In Concert!
March 10, 2011
Written By: Kyle Lechtenberg

Throughout the ages, and especially since the Renaissance, composers have found the texts of the Mass to be ripe for creativity.  During the month of April, choral groups in the Des Moines area will be performing musical settings of the Mass texts in three very different styles.  Celebrate the Diocese of Des Moines' Centennial year and prepare for the new Roman Missal by attending one or more of these fantastic opportunities to hear the Mass--in concert!

Heaven and Earth: A Celtic Mass

Saturday, 2 April 2011 at 7:30 pm (First Christian Church, Des Moines)

How are the Mass texts actually experienced by individuals, families, and nations, in times of joy or strife? Des Moines composer Ben Allaway has set the texts of the Mass side-by-side with musical and narrative human experieneces. A 200-voice Celtic Mass Choir will be conducted by the composer, Ben Allaway, anchored by the Omaha Symphonic Chorus and the Des Moines Vocal Arts Ensemble, with the choirs of First Christian Church, St. Paul's Episcopal Cathedral, and Opus24 of Decatur, IL.

Tickets: Adult $15 in advance, $17 at the door, Student $10 at or, or call Frist Christian Church at 515.255.2181.

Haydn's Nelson Mass

Sat., 9 April 2011 at 8 pm; Sun., 10 April 2011 at 3 pm (Cathedral of St. Ambrose, Des Moines)

Composed in 1798 for liturgical use, the Nelson Mass was commissioned by F.J. Haydn's employer to celebrate the name day of Princess Esterhazy, the wife of Prince Nicholas II, who was Haydn's employer. Drake University's Nelson Mass performance will involve approximately 240 singers as well as 60 instrumentalists, and will be conducted by Dr. Aimee Beckmann-Collier, director of Choral Studies at Drake University, and conductor of diocesan liturgies for over 25 years.


Tickets will be available beginning March 21 at the Drake Fine Arts Box Office, 515.271.3841. $5 for students and $10 for non-students. No tickets will be sold at the door.


Brahms' A German Requiem

Sat., 30 April 2011 at 7:30 pm (Cathedral of St. Ambrose, Des Moines)

Using the traditional Requiem Mass form as inspiration, the musical master Johannes Brahms crafted  Ein Deutsches Requiem as both a tribute to those who died and a consolation to the living who mourn their loss.  Brahms' Requiem is comprised of Scriptural and poetic texts focusing on life and death. The Des Moines Choral Society returns to the Cathedral for the second time this Centennial year, under the direction of Dr. James Rodde, Director of Choral Activities at Iowa State University.


Tickets: $20 for preferred seating, $15 for regular seating and $7 for student/child seating. Tickets can be obtained through Save to


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