Legends and myths have accompanied Mozart’s mysterious Requiem Torso from the very beginning. What a tragedy: of all things, during the composition of a requiem mass, death “itself” ends the work of the seriously diseased musical genius. One third of the mass text remains unscored and the orchestral arrangement is completed only in rudimentary form. Nevertheless, the emotions evoked by this “unfinished” composition are of elemental force. Hopeless and hopeful at the same time, everything that grips man in the face of death is gathered together. The spectrum ranges from despair, sadness and fear to anger and hope. But also the wrath of God is expressed dramatically and with earthly force.
Before that, a modern work will be heard in the Passion Concert 2020 of the Stuttgarter Oratorienchor. It was premiered in Vienna in 1985 (as was Mozart’s Requiem-Torso) and expanded in 2008 by the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt. In his Stabat Mater, spherical, floating sounds in the “Tintinnabuli” style determine the musical structure and seem to come from another world. Space and time are suspended, as it were – cosmic expanses reveal themselves to the inner eye and ear.
Arvo Pärt’s quest for silence
“How to fill the following silence (hush) with sounds that would be worthy of the preceding hush (silence)?”
“Silence is always more perfect than music. You just have to learn to hear it.”
“I realized that it is enough for a single note to be played beautifully. This sound, the silence or the hush make me feel calm. I work with few materials, with one voice, with two voices. I build from content material, from a triad, a certain tonal quality. The three sounds of a triad have a bell-like effect. That’s how I called it Tintinnabuli.“Arvo Pärt
“Spherical” meets “Earthly”
The encounter of contemporary sound art with a classical masterpiece as well as the magic of contrasts promises our audience an exciting listening experience on Palm Sunday.