Faure - Requiem, Cantique de Jean Racine, Messe Basse
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Label: Kings College Cambridge
Cat No: KGS0005
Number of Discs: 1
Release Date: 15th September 2014
ArtistsTom Pickard (treble)
Gerald Finley (baritone)
Douglas Tang (organ)
Tom Etheridge (organ)
Choir of Kings College Cambridge
Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment
In January 2014, the Choir of King’s College Cambridge were joined by the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and former choral scholar Gerald Finley to make the first recording of Marc Rigaudière’s new reconstruction of the first complete liturgical performance of Fauré’s 'Requiem'. This version employs a small orchestra of violas, cellos and basses, augmented by solo violin in one movement and brass in several more.
Under the direction of Stephen Cleobury, the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge has faithfully recreated the 1889 premiere, even using the organ stops available to the organist at the Cathedrale de Ste Madeleine in Paris. The instruments and techniques used by the orchestra are typical of those used in a French orchestra of the late 19th century.
'Pie Jesu' is sung by treble Tom Pickard, in his final year as a chorister at King’s College School. The baritone solos are sung by Gerald Finley, who attended King’s College as an undergraduate choral scholar. Gerald Finley says of the recording, “It is such a joy to sing with the best choir in the world. Being part of this Fauré 'Requiem', a piece I have known since a chorister in Canada, with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Stephen Cleobury, is a dream come true.”
In the original version of the Requiem, the baritone solo of the 'Hostias' was heard alone, without the bookends forming the Offertorium. The expanded version, as edited by John Rutter, is also included on this album for comparison.
Fauré's 'Requiem' forms a cornerstone of the Choir’s touring repertoire, and is performed many times each year, both with orchestras and organ accompaniment, along with the 'Cantique de Jean Racine', heard here in its original version for Choir and Organ. These works are complimented by the 'Messe Basse' for high voices, sung by the 16 choristers of the choir.
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