An Elegy for All Humanity
The final concert of the season features a rarely heard version of Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem for choir, soloists and eleven piece chamber ensemble, enhancing the intimate qualities of this beloved work. In his Requiem, Brahms approaches death from a deeply human perspective, deliberately abandoning dogma in favor of inclusiveness.
Also on the program is a newly orchestrated version of Seymour Bernstein‘s cantata Song of Nature, arranged by Musica Viva NY Artistic Director Alejandro Hernandez-Valdez. Bernstein describes the genesis of the piece: “I first read Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Essay, Nature, in 1990. But it was not until late August of 1996 that its profound message took hold of me and held me captive until I completed Song of Nature a month later. It became clear from the beginning that the sentiments expressed in Spirit, section VII of the Essay, would influence my musical language. With Bach and Handel as my inspirational models, I found myself improvising and singing in a style that bypassed anything resembling twentieth century compositional techniques. One might categorize Song of Nature, therefore, as a traditional or inspirational choral work.”
With the Musica Viva NY choir, soprano Devony Smith, bass-baritone Joseph Beutel, and narrator David Rockefeller, Jr.
Pre-concert screening of Ethan Hawke’s acclaimed documentary Seymour: An Introduction takes place at 2:30 p.m. in Reidy Friendship Hall followed by a Q & A session with Seymour Bernstein. Admission free with purchase of concert ticket.
Song of Nature by Seymour Bernstein (new arrangement by Alejandro Hernandez-Valdez)
Ein deutsches Requiem, Op. 45 by Johannes Brahms (arranged for chamber ensemble by Joachim Linckelmann)
Approximate concert running time: 105 minutes.