On November 21, 2019 and November 23, 2019, the Louisiana Philharmonic will be performing Mozart’s Requiem, and I highly encourage everyone, even those who are rare symphony-goers to attend.
You see, a work of this size requires a full orchestra, a full choir, and a set of opera singers for its success. That’s a lot more musicians on the stage collaborating than in your typical symphony concert where you’d have a full orchestra playing with a soloist and then just a full orchestra. And it is something to be appreciated.
Also, works like Mozart’s Requiem are particularly soul-stirring in my opinion. This work was one of the last works that Mozart composed before his death – he worked on it in the second half of 1791 and died in December 1791, leaving the work unfinished (ultimately finished by a student of his, named Franz Xaver Sussmayr). Parts of the requiem were performed for Mozart’s own funeral mass. The history of the work has been enshrouded by myths and untruths by scholarship since its inception – a most recent example is the film Amadeus, so the work itself has some spectre surrounding it. But even without knowing any of that, it is sublime to hear, see, feel, and experience. It touches my soul.
You can read more about the history of the work in Michael Steinburg’s excellent Choral Masterworks: a Listeners Guide. Oxford University Press, 2005 (pp. 219-229).
IF you can’t make the concert, add it to your future events to look out for (along with all great choral masterworks). If you’d like to hear a performance from youtube, please see below and enjoy!