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#1360314 - 01/28/10 04:05 PM Requiem
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6382
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
I was just wondering if there are any conventions/rules for the composition of a Requiem? Does anybody know?

Thanks,
CA
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#1360854 - 01/29/10 11:49 AM Re: Requiem [Re: ChopinAddict]
8ude Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 2051
These days, I'd say no. I've heard them as "standard" mass settings (a la Mozart), more symphonic in nature (Brahms German Requiem, Britten's War Requiem), song settings (Ricky Ian Gordon's Water Music - a Requiem), even rock albums (Pink Floyd's Final Cut subtitled a Requiem for the Postwar Dream).

I'd say the only "convention" is to keep it in line with a more somber tone/setting - I wouldn't classify requiems as "heppy" music...

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#1360985 - 01/29/10 02:49 PM Re: Requiem [Re: 8ude]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6382
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Thanks, 8ude. I have indeed called one of my compositions Requiem. It is somber, but I didn't follow any specific rules.
Sure enough, the Requiems of the great composers are absolutely fantastic, they really knock you down....
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#1361251 - 01/29/10 09:10 PM Re: Requiem [Re: ChopinAddict]
Kreisler Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13825
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Technically, a Requiem is the Catholic service for the deceased and is based on the Mass.

Musical requiems started out as such and were composed for liturgical purposes, but through the 18th and 19th centuries, the requiem evolved into a concert work, similar to an oratorio.

As has been said, most requiems align themselves to the traditional litrugical service in Latin, the two notable exceptions being Brahms's and Britten's, which uses the traditional structure interspersed with settings of Wilfred Owen's poetry.
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"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

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#1361724 - 01/30/10 04:24 PM Re: Requiem [Re: Kreisler]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6382
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Thanks for the info, Kreisler. smile
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#1524599 - 09/28/10 07:06 PM Re: Requiem [Re: 8ude]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6382
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
I know it is a vague question blush , but which instruments do you think are the most apt to convey this sense of sombreness and death in a Requiem?
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#1524611 - 09/28/10 07:40 PM Re: Requiem [Re: ChopinAddict]
jazzyprof Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/30/04
Posts: 2713
Loc: Ann Arbor, MI
The cello and French horn.
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#1524615 - 09/28/10 07:47 PM Re: Requiem [Re: jazzyprof]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6382
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Originally Posted By: jazzyprof
The cello and French horn.


Thanks. smile
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#1524925 - 09/29/10 10:58 AM Re: Requiem [Re: ChopinAddict]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 651
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: ChopinAddict
I know it is a vague question blush , but which instruments do you think are the most apt to convey this sense of sombreness and death in a Requiem?


I was going to suggest bagpipes and kazoos . . .

It depends. Trombones were once seen as the instruments for conveying spiritual awe, might, angst, etc. Prior to that it was the unaccompanied human voice.

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#1525403 - 09/30/10 04:19 AM Re: Requiem [Re: gsmonks]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6382
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Thanks!
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#1525686 - 09/30/10 02:46 PM Re: Requiem [Re: ChopinAddict]
Victor25 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/30/09
Posts: 1676
Loc: The Netherlands
French Horn, Bassoon, Violin etc. Even though a requiem is somber, if you listen to Mozart's confutatis, you can hear it can have powerful parts too!
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Currently working on: Perfecting the Op 2/1, studying the 27/2 last movement. Chopin Nocturne 32/2 and Posth. C#m, 'Raindrop' prelude and Etude 10/9
Repetoire: Beethoven op 2/1, 10/1(1st, 2nd), 13, 14/1, 27/1(1st, 2nd), 27/2, 28(1st, 2nd), 31/2(1st, 3rd), 49/1, 49/2, 78(1st), 79, 90, 101(1st)

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#1525811 - 09/30/10 06:18 PM Re: Requiem [Re: ChopinAddict]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6382
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Yes, absolutely. Actually Mozart's Confutatis is so beautifully powerful I cannot get it out of my head!
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#1528231 - 10/04/10 07:16 PM Re: Requiem [Re: ChopinAddict]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6382
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
I think timpani are good too for a Requiem.
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Music is my best friend.


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#1529398 - 10/06/10 11:57 AM Re: Requiem [Re: ChopinAddict]
ex_aedibus Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/06/10
Posts: 7
Originally Posted By: ChopinAddict
I think timpani are good too for a Requiem.


It didn't stop Verdi, though. I love my recording of Toscanini conducting the Verdi Requiem. I swear that Dies Irae would scare children. In fact, I was at a performance of the Verdi Requiem and a young child seated near me started clutching his mother tightly right as the Dies Irae started.

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