Thompson: Requiem / Hayes, Philadelphia Singers

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Listen to the Naxos Podcast episode on this release to learn more!

Randall Thompson’s choral works retain the affection of American choral singers and conductors alike. The Requiem is his masterpiece, written in response to the loss of close friends and colleagues. Using a wide-ranging selection of Biblical verses, it takes the form of a dramatic dialogue between two choirs, a "chorus of mourners" and a "chorus of the faithful", concerning eternal life. Recorded here for the first time in its complete form, this Requiem is an emotional and dramatically intense journey of conflict and resolution, and entirely unique within American music history and the requiem tradition as a whole.


The performance is very well done by The Philadelphia Singers, a professional choir that after 43 years disbanded in 2015, the year after this recording was made. Although it’s an often strange and imperfect work, we’re fortunate to have the recording, as it fills an important gap in Thompson’s recorded catalog and gives a first-class opportunity to experience aspects of his compositional style that we don’t hear anywhere else in his output.

-- (David Vernier)

The Philadelphia Singers, under the tireless, polished leadership of David Hayes, sustain an impressively high level of musicianship over the course of this long and demanding unaccompanied piece. Thompson’s Requiem is revealed here as a major work, unique and masterful, by an important American voice of the last century. I highly recommend it.

-- Opera News

Product Description:

  • Release Date: May 13, 2016

  • Catalog Number: 8559789

  • UPC: 636943978924

  • Label: Naxos

  • Number of Discs: 1

  • Period: 20th Century

  • Composer: Randall Thompson

  • Conductor: David Hayes

  • Orchestra/Ensemble: Philadelphia Singers


  1. Requiem

    Composer: Randall Thompson

    Ensemble: The Philadelphia Singers

    Conductor: David Hayes