Bavarian Radio Choir, Peter Dijkstra (conductor)
Sacred music only constitutes a small part of Alfred Schnittke's oeuvre. In his works, he approaches religion very freely and subjectively, while basing his music on established liturgical forms. One significant example of this is his 'Concerto for Chorus', given its world premiere in June of 1986 in Moscow. The texts are based on the 'Book of Sad Songs' - a collection of prayers by the Armenian mystic St. Gregory of Narek. These medieval texts left a lasting impression on Schnittke, and they offered him the possibility to create a choral work in a larger format which blends the flavour of Orthodox church music and the model of 18th- and 19th-century russian music while bringing them stylistically into the present. The Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks under the direction of Peter Dijkstra supplements the Concerto for Chorus with two further sacred works. Schnittke's Three Sacred Songs (1983) and Voices of Nature (1972) - initially the score for the film documentary 'And This is What I Believe'. The finale is the cantata Dopo la vittoria (After the Victory) written in 1997 by the renowned Estonian-born composer Arvo Part. This piece is also based on a highly unusual text: an article from a church music lexicon, in which the legendary story of the creation of the Te Deum is told.
Schnittke Konzert fur Chor, Drei geistliche Gesange, Voice of Nature; Part Dopo la vittoria
Running Time: 1 hr 1 min hr