Suz Pizazz non Solemnis

Here is a note I wrote to the tune's inspiration, explaining how this piece came about:

Greetings, incipient septagenarian SKL!

Several weeks ago it occurred to me that it would be nice to acknowledge your sense of pizazz (excuse the secondary spelling -- I like it better than something that looks vaguely like the rear end of a pizza) by composing a tune in honor of the coming occasion.

I decided to work on a spirited waltz, in which I wanted to have a lot of pizazz-y scalar running around. The first part of the tune (the "A-music," as we folk dance musicians call it) came together quite nicely. But I found myself stuck trying to put together the B-music.

I sat for a while, thinking about you, and realized that one of the strong themes in your life has been your regular attendance at Mass, WHEREVER you happen to be on a Sunday. The idea of looking at music from a mass was intriguing, and since my mother's favorite piece of classical music was Beethoven's Missa Solemnis, I looked around on YouTube and found a performance of the "Gloria" part of the piece. It had a number of nice rhythmic and melodic patterns in the first few minutes. So I borrowed a few of those, and the whole thing came together nicely (at least IMHO). However, the idea of solemnity didn't fit with the pizazz-y picture I was painting of you, so I called the whole thing "Suz Pizazz non Solemnis."

and a follow-up note with technical details for a friend of hers:

As I mentioned, certain patterns of the tune were taken from the Gloria section of the Mass. The performance I used is portrayed on YouTube at

Given that I only had 16 measures to fill in the tune's B-music (the last 3 lines in the "sheet music"), I found more than enough material in the first single minute of the Gloria -- the heavily instrumental part prior to the beginning of the primarily choral section.

For what it's worth, here are the links between the borrowed measures of those last three lines of the tune to the patterns they came from in the Mass, and the elapsed time in the video at which those patterns occur:

Measures Rhythm and/or melodic pattern (elapsed time in seconds)
1,2,8 Opening rising phrases (12-17, 23)
3,4 [related to the pattern in measures 9-11 -- see next]*
5,6,7 [related to the pattern in measures 1,2,8 -- see above)**
9,10,11 Cascading melody/rhythm (18-22, 44-47)
12-14+ Glo-ri-a's (30-38)

* This is what I heard at first, when I hadn't yet notice the initial lower note in the actual pattern (shown in measures 9-11); it seems to me the impression the piece leaves you with unless you listen closely.

** This was a rhythm pattern -- a held initial note followed by others in quick succession, which is done instrumentally at seconds 12-14 and by voices at seconds 20-23. The actual music uses a scalar run for the quick notes, rather than just the threer I use, but I nevertheless came away from the music with a sense that I had heard this pattern, so it is clearly the held-note rhythm pattern that I was getting.