Dvorak: Complete Sacred Choral Music
Unrivalled in the catalogue, this release brings together all the works in a genre for which Dvorák has been undervalued. The composer was himself a lifelong Catholic, a man of uncomplicated faith and not prey to spiritual torments in the manner of his contemporary Bruckner. Dvorák wrote religious music throughout his career, though his first substantial contribution was the Stabat mater of 1876-7. This large-scale setting burns with a restrained pathos likely intensified during the period of composition by the deaths of his children. One of the most personal of all his major works, the Stabat mater sets the tone for the equally large-scale St Ludmila oratorio of 1886 and the Requiem of 1890: sorrow and consolation are the Requiem’s key-signatures, just as devout belief infuses the Czech legend of St Ludmila. The Mass in D was originally composed in 1887 with organ accompaniment, but the carefully integrated nature of his setting is in the spirit of the late Masses by Haydn and Schubert, as he recognized by orchestrating it a few years later. His final sacred work is the elementally exuberant Te Deum of 1892, which looks back in spirit to his robust and festive setting of Psalm 149. The recordings in this release are all modern, made during the last 20 years by ensembles in Cologne, Navarra, Warsaw and Washington, and masterminded by noted choral conductors.
Catalog Number: BRI95609
Label: Brilliant Classics
Composer: Antonín Dvořák
Conductor: Antoni Wit, Gerd Albrecht, Robert Shafer
Orchestra/Ensemble: Navarra Symphony Orchestra, Orfeon Pamplones Chorus, Prague Chamber Chorus, Warsaw Philharmonic Chorus, Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, Washington Chorus, Washington Orchestra, WDR Rundfunkchor Koln, Wdr Rundfunkorchester Koln
Performer: Christiane Libor, Christine Brewer, Daniel Kirch, Ding Gao, Ewa Biegas, Ewa Wolak, Janusz Monarcha, Javier Tome, John Aler, José Antonio Lopez, Lívia Aghová, Ludek Vele, Marietta Simpson, Marina Rodriguez-Cusi, Michelle Breedt, Piotr Beczala