Hector Berlioz: Requiem (Grand Messe des Morts)

Hector Berlioz: Requiem (Grand Messe des Morts)

by Michael Spyres

CD(Bonus DVD)

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Adding to his growing output of Berlioz recordings for Erato, John Nelson leads the Philharmonia Orchestra in a compelling and sensitive performance of the "Requiem (Grande Messe des morts)," recorded in London's St. Paul's Cathedral in vibrant sound with magnificent acoustics. The fame of the "Requiem" rests largely on the effectiveness of the "Tuba Mirum" section of the "Dies Irae," where Berlioz calls for four antiphonal brass ensembles stationed at the four corners of the auditorium, representing the "Last Judgment," and if their ricocheting fanfares aren't loud enough to raise the dead, the percussion section of sixteen timpani, two bass drums, and four tam-tams may well raise one's neck hairs. Yet the bulk of Berlioz's 1837 masterpiece is considerably subdued and reflective in mood, and the orchestra serves mostly as an accompaniment to the London Philharmonic Choir and the Philharmonia Chorus, which are fully audible at soft dynamics and the Latin text is clearly articulated. Tenor Michael Spyres delivers the rapturous solo in the "Sanctus," seemingly floating above the women's voices in Berlioz's remarkably transparent textures. The performance was recorded on March 8, 2019, and the concert video is provided on a bonus DVD.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/25/2019
Label: Erato
UPC: 0190295430641
catalogNumber: 607237
Rank: 5929


  1. Requiem (Grande Messe des morts), for tenor, chorus & orchestra, H. 75 (Op. 5)

    1. No. 1 Requiem et Kyrie (Introït)  (09:52)
    2. Opening
    3. Prose des morts: No. 2 Dies irae et Tuba mirum  (12:27)
    4. I. Requiem et Kyrie (Introït)
    5. Prose des morts: No. 3 Quid sum miser  (02:57)
    6. Prose des morts: II. Dies irae et Tuba mirum
    7. Prose des morts: No. 4 Rex tremendae  (06:16)
    8. Prose des morts: III. Quid sum miser
    9. Prose des morts: No. 5 Quaerens me  (04:41)
    10. Prose des morts: IV. Rex tremendae
    11. Prose des morts: No. 6 Lacrymosa  (10:18)
    12. Prose des morts: V. Quaerens me
    13. Offertoire (Chœur des âmes du purgatoire): No. 7 Domine  (08:32)
    14. Prose des morts: VI. Lacrymosa
    15. Offertoire (Chœur des âmes du purgatoire): No. 8 Hostias  (03:19)
    16. Offertoire (Chœur des âmes du purgatoire): VII. Domine
    17. No. 9 Sanctus  (11:30)
    18. Offertoire (Chœur des âmes du purgatoire): VIII. Hostias
    19. No. 10 Agnus Dei  (11:36)
    20. IX. Sanctus
    21. X. Agnus Dei
    22. Applause and end credits

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