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John Rutter unashamedly composes instantly memorable tunes. In a world where so many composers believe music is no longer primarily about melody, Rutter stands out as someone who defiantly bucks that trend.
Nowhere is it more evident than in his glorious Requiem. Composed in 1985, the work is reminiscent of the Requiem of Fauré for its simplicity, brevity and rich choral writing.
Rutter’s music is popular around the world, particularly with choral societies. On both sides of the Atlantic, performances of his music can be heard week in, week out.
This seven-movement Requiem is traditional in its inspiration, using texts from the Requiem Mass and the Book of Common Prayer. The gloriously pure Pie Jesu is a real highlight – as is the Requiem Aeternam, which opens the work. Still performed regularly across the world, Rutter’s Requiem thoroughly earns its status as one of the most popular compositions of the last thirty years.
Caroline Ashton (soprano); Donna dean (soprano); Patricia Forbes (soprano); Cambridge Singers; City of London Sinfonia; John Rutter (conductor). Collegium: CSCD 504.
Illustration: Mark Millington