Monday, March 26, 2007

Christopher Rouse's Requiem

Keith Chaffee blogs on the first performance of Christopher Rouse's Requiem.

It sounds like a great piece - and there must have been some fundraising happening to put it on, with that orchestra. I wonder if it would scare Ragnar Bohlin?


Anonymous said...

We're amateur choristers in the Bay Area and Rouse fans. So we travelled to LA to hear the premiere. From what we heard from one of the Chorale members, it sounded like it would be our only chance to hear it for quite some time.

It is a great piece, but we don't expect to hear it in San Francisco because:

1) It's really difficult. The LA Master Chorale is 100% professional chorus. In San Francisco, the Opera Chorus has probably handled music of comparable difficulty during the Rosenberg years, but not the Symphony Chorus.

2) MTT does not appear to be a Rouse fan. Has the Symphony done any work by Rouse besides Rapture? The only regular guest conductor who appears to appreciate Rouse is David Robertson. The San Francisco Symphony has not been very hospitable to American music by living composers (except for Adams) for several years now.

The LA orchestra wasn't that huge - big wind and percussion sections, but not a big string section. I would guess the major costs for the piece would be the extra rehearsal time for the chorus.

I'd love to hear it in San Francisco - heck, as a Rouse lover I'd love to have a chance to sing it - but don't hold your breath. I would love to be proven wrong about that.

Lisa Hirsch said...

Wow, thank you - great and informative comments. That is too bad. I would love to get a look at the score. Hmmm, I might be able to get a study score from the publisher or Rouse himself...