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A Historical Performance Of Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem

Brahms? On period instruments? Is that early music?


Photo: Loveless (Wikipedia)

Johannes Brahms.

John Eliot Gardiner has been interested in historical performance for many years, first exploring the work of Claudio Monteverdi with the founding of the Monteverdi Choir in 1977.  More recently, that interest has pushed the boundaries of “early music” well into the nineteenth century with his founding of the period instrument Orchestre Révolutionaire et Romantique.

In 2012 the Soli Deo Gloria label released a live recording of Gardiner conducting that same orchestra in Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem.   He uses instruments that were favored by Brahms and reconfigures the size and layout of the orchestra; and he searched for hints about forgotten playing styles.

To the 21st century ear, the playing seems akin to what we now perceive as a classical playing style, historically speaking, certainly more inflected and less legato than a contemporary modern orchestral sound.

Brahms Ein deutsches Requiem
Gardiner (Soli Deo Gloria, 2012)
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album cover

Brahms Ein deutsches Requiem
Gardiner (Soli Deo Gloria, 2012)
Buy from Amazon »
album cover
Wendy Gillespie

Wendy Gillespie is Professor of Music, teaching early bowed strings and performance studies, at the Early Music Institute of the Jacobs School of Music, Bloomington, IN and President of the VdGSA. As a viola da gamba player, she has made more than 80 CDs and performed on five continents.

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  • MusicDirector22

    It’s interesting that the CD picture that is listed here is Phillips. This recording was issued in 1991. I’m not certain what the Soli Deo Gloria label attribution in 2012 means.

  • Janelle Davis

    Thank you. We’ve updated the picture and link.

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