Friday, April 27, 2012

One Week to Go!

In-Choir-ing Minds attendees explore the unique features of Hector Berlioz's "Grand Messe des Morts" with my pal (and ISC Keyboard Artist) Kris Sanchack

We are just one week away! Next Saturday, May 5, the Indianapolis Symphonic Choir presents the magnificent Berlioz Requiem at 8 pm at Hilbert Circle Theater in Indianapolis (Words on Music begins at 7:05 with Dr. Michael Sells). It's hard to believe...after years of planning and preparations...we are so close to this thrilling event!

When composed in 1837 (exactly 100 years before the founding of the ISC), Berlioz had grand spaces in mind. The Chapel at Les Invalides in Paris afforded him the opportunity to dream on a massive scale scale. Good thing too, since a listing of the required instrumentation reads like an encyclopedia of orchestra instruments:
4 flutes
2 oboes
2 english horns
4 clarinets
8 bassoons
12 horns
8 pairs of timpani
2 bass drums
4 gongs
10 pairs of cymbals
50 violins
20 violas
20 cellos
18 doublebasses

Plus brass off-stage
16 trumpets
16 trombones
6 tubas

And a chorus of
80 sopranos
60 tenors
70 basses

Consequently, four brass choirs, placed in the four corners surrounding the performers and audience, provided a unique chance to depict musically the "wondrous trumpet" calling to all creation.

The last Indianapolis performance of this work was over 30 years ago. The Symphonic Choir is proud to share this powerful, moving work with our community. See you at the concert!

Checking out the view from the Theater Side Box, "home" to one of the off-stage brass choirs for our May 5 performance of the Berlioz Requiem

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