MEMETERIA by Thomas May

Music & the Arts

A Golden-Mouthed Choral Tradition


The Los Angeles Master Chorale’s new season will start in another week with a concert titled “The Russian Evolution.”

Here’s my introduction to the program:

In few areas has the tension between longstanding tradition and cataclysmic revolution played a more dramatic role than in the history of cultural expression in Russia.

Along with the First World War that framed it, the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 marks a radical dividing line – as abrupt as traveling across multiple time zones in a single flight.

The transformation of the Russian Empire into the Soviet Union had a particularly devastating impact on the tradition of sacred choral music, not long after a fresh impetus from composers like Grechaninov and Rachmaninoff – a movement known as the New Russian Choral School – had begun revitalizing that tradition.

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Filed under: choral music, Gubaidulina


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