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All-Night Vigil: Vespers - Sergei Rachmaninov

Item Number: 8246

Catalog Code: ED-HMU 90738462-DIS

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Estonian Pilharmonic Chamber Choir, Paul Hillier

The period from 1880 to 1917 marked a renaissance in Russian choral music.  Previously, Russian choral music had been dominated by German and Italian influences.  Now composers returned to old Russian chant as the source for their works, thus creating a thoroughly Russian choral style.  Although Sergei Rachmaninov wrote only a few choral works, they are among the finest examples of Russian choral music ever written.  Of those works, the All-Night Vigil (more commonly referred to as the Vespers) stands as his crowning achievement and is widely regarded as the pinnacle of Orthodox church music as a whole.  Composed in 1915, the All-Night Vigil is comprised of texts for the services of Vespers, Matins and Prime.  In writing the Rachmaninov employed a system known as "choral orchestration," which requires singers to make use of a wide range of complex vocal techniques.  But for all the innovation and technical prowess evident in Rachmaninov's All-Night Vigil, it is the work's intense emotion and deep spirituality that stays with the listener.  Paul Hillier leads the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir in a sumtuous performance.

About the Artists
"These vocal artists convey belief in every syllable they sing." -San Francisco Chronicle

"Pure and impassioned, astounding choral artists." -The Wall Street Journal


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