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Born in Dresden, Rudolf Mauersberger (1889-1971) composed Dresdner Requiem as an emotive response to the allied bombing of the city in 1945. Apart from the opening ‘Requiem aeternam’ the texts are sung in German throughout, and are taken from the Old and New Testaments and the German Lutheran Hymn Book. The composer has been very resourceful in dividing the large choir into three groups, which varies the homophonic textures. The music is partly a cappella, and there is an extremely effective use of the echo choir. The evocative scoring includes brass, percussion, double basses, celesta and organ. Dresdner Kreuzchoir gives a heartfelt performance, which resonates with underlying emotion. Preceding the Requiem the scene of desolation is set by the expressive motet How lonely sits the city, from the composer’s Choral Cycle Dresden (1945-50).

SHIRLEY RATCLIFFE Read the full review on Agora Classica


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