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Sergei Rachmaninov – Vespers, Op.37 – St Petersburg Chamber Choir, Nikolai Korniev (2003) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Sergei Rachmaninov – Vespers, Op.37 – St Petersburg Chamber Choir, Nikolai Korniev (2003)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 49:22 minutes | 819 MB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: Q0buz | Digital booklet | © Pentatone Music B.V.
Recorded: Elburg, The Netherlands, 12/2002

Although in western Europe it is virtually taken for granted that a composer who is well-versed in all genres also writes church music, thereby enriching the Catholic or Protestant religions with this sacred music composed for all different ensembles, Russian composers did not discover sacred music until relatively recently. The main reason for this lay in the Russian-Orthodox liturgy, as this did not permit any kind of instruments to embellish the religion. Only singing characterized the development of the liturgical events – and that only when preaching the word of God. As an indispensable part of the orthodox religion, its main task consisted of increasing the vividness of church dogmas and imprinting them in the minds of the believers.

For a long time, the accompanying melodies were as sacrosanct as the words themselves. In the course of the Christianization process, the Russians, as of the year 988, took over both the liturgy – in the Church Slavonic translation – and its musical accompaniment together with the rules of the orthodox church. Not until Russia became more important on the whole, following the fall of Constantinople in 1453, was Russian church music able to develop independently. Diverse regional schools for singing were then established, characterized by the vocal virtuosity of outstanding vocalists.

“Orthodox church music with a Russian choir singing under the baton of Nikolai Korniev has rarely sounded this well marshalled. Beguiling in its most intimate and devout moments, generous and candid with a gently overpowering collective voice that exudes innocence, joy and elation in equal amounts as they zealously praise God and His works.” –HiFi & Classical

“The spiritual purity of so many of the hymns is underscored by the beautifully blended voices of the choir. The performance and recording are characterized by a wide dynamic range, which peaks at moments such as the ecstatic outpouring of praise in Hymn 7, Slava v vyshnikh Bogu (Glory to God in the highest). So, audiophiles, don’t say you weren’t warned.” –Phil Muse, Atlanta Audio Society

“The St Petersburg Chamber Choir radiates the infinite calm required for this music – incredible tension is created through the use of the special breathing technique of the choir whereby the choir members do not take a breath simultaneously but one after another.” –Philip Kelm, Stereo

Sergei Rachmaninov (1873-1945)
All-Night Vigil, Op. 37, Vespers
1 I. Priidite, poklanimsya (O come, let us worship) 2:16
2 II. Blagoslovi, dushe moya (Bless the Lord, O my soul) 4:59
3 III. Blazen muzh (Blessed be the Man) 3:40
4 IV. Svete tikhyi (O Jesus Christ) 2:51
5 V. Nyne otpushchayeshi (Lord, now lettest Thou Thy Servant depart) 3:23
6 VI. Bogoroditse Devo (Virgin, Mother of God) 2:28
7 VII. Slava v vyshnikh Bogu (Glory to God in the highest) 2:30
8 VIII. Khvalite imya Gospodne (Praise ye the name of the Lord) 1:45
9 IX. Blagosloven esi, Gospodi (Glessed art Thou, o Lord) 5:12
10 X. Voskreseniye Khristovo videvshe (Having beheld the Resurrection of Christ) 2:41
11 XI. Velichit dusha moya Gospoda (My soul doth magnify the Lord) 6:19
12 XII. Slava v vyshnikh Bogu (Glory to God in the highest) 6:47
13 XIII. Voskres iz groba (Rising from the tomb) 3:03
14 XIV. Vzbrannoy voevode (To thee, o the Mother of God) 1:28

St. Petersburg Chamber Choir
Nikolai Korniev, conductor


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