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Biblical Songs

1st Bachchor Concert / Johannes Brahms: »Nänie« op. 82 / Antonín Dvořák: »Biblical Songs« op. 99 / Johannes Brahms: »Song of Destiny« op. 54

Milda Tubelytė
Chœur Symphonique de Montpellier

Nänie is a lamentation from the classical Antiquity. Brahms’ lamentation »Nänie« op. 82 is based on the poem of the same title by Friedrich Schiller. The work was composed in response to the death of  the painter Anselm Feuerbach whom Brahms held in high esteem.

Antonín Dvořák’s »Biblical Songs« were created in the spring of 1894 during his time in the US. Shortly before, he learned of the death of his colleagues Tchaikovsky, Gounod and von Bülow. His father died around the same time. It is hardly surprising that Dvořák turned to religious texts. The psalms set to music change from pleading statements to urging and optimistic ones.

Brahms’ »Song of Destiny« is based on a poem from »Hyperion« by Friedrich Hölderlin, but the music finishes on a hopeful note, like the requiem.