As the name suggests, the Missa Popularis has its musical roots in folk music. This becomes clear in the very first bars of the Kyrie, where the violin plays a melody in the style of a Swedish folk tune above a bass ostinato. The musical charm of the Mass derives from the combination of choir [SSA(TB)] and string quartet. The choral parts enable performances by female choir or mixed choir. In the latter case the string quartet is reinforced by a double bass.
The version for female choir was premièred in Poznan on 25 April 2015, with Alicja Szeluga conducting the Skowronki Girls Choir.
“My music is my own and I have never tried to be original. That has always been my motto and I have only tried to use music to express all the feelings which life has to offer. This has led people to describe my music as ‘so sad that it sounds like birds who have lost their wings‘ but also as ‘the happiest classical music that we have ever heard’.
My compositions are almost all sacred. They express not only my own faith but also my appreciation and respect for the timeless texts that have been used for centuries and centuries.”
Mårten Jansson (b. 1965), elected member of the Föreningen svenska tonsättare (the Society of Swedish Composers), graduated from the Royal College of Music, Stockholm (KHM) with an MFA degree in Music Education, Dalcroze Eurhythmics and Voice. For more than ten years he was the music director and conductor of “Carmen”, one of the most prominent womens’ vocal ensembles in Sweden. He currently teaches choral conducting and music theory as well as giving vocal tuition at the Bolandgymnasiet and Musikskolan in his home town of Uppsala.