Thomas Hengelbrock I

J. Brahms: A German Requiem

Description Program Artists

In his German Requiem, Johannes Brahms definitively parted ways with his resigned “frei aber einsam” (free but alone) motto. The three-note motif (f – a - e) is turned on its head, the music now telling us: alone, yes, but also consoled! Cerebral ciphers? On the contrary, this is what Romanticism is all about! Like the line “Selig sind, die da Leid tragen” (blessed are they that mourn) – they who also escape with Brahms into the Black Forest, where this introverted man dealt with his themes while hiking. All this ripened and developed to give rise to his musical oeuvre, with the German Requiem marking its symphonic beginning. It is the greatest singers who make this music their own. But Brahms’s innermost feelings are revealed in the choral parts – interpreted here by the Balthasar Neumann Choir, Thomas Hengelbrock’s cherished ensemble.

Photo that shows Hengelbrock 2016 C Florence Grandidier. © Florence Grandidier
© Florence Grandidier


Franz Schreker
Psalm 116

Johannes Brahms
A German Requiem, op. 45 To Words of the Holy Scriptures

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