Requiem Aeternam

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My first response to the tragedy of September 11, 2001 was the desire to pray for the souls of the victims.  The prayer came to me in musical form: the sound of a capella voices singing words from the beginning of the Latin Requiem Mass.  The prayer is at first low and tentative, then increasingly impassioned.  Silences are very important to the idea of the music.  As the piece goes on, the role of the silences shifts from punctuation to interruption, as though the impulse to pray were being choked off.

Text:

Requiem aeternam dona eis, domine
Et lux perpetua luceat eis.
Exaudi orationem meum.
Ad te omnis caro veniet.
Kyrie eleison, Christe eleison, Kyrie eleison.

Grant them eternal rest, oh Lord
And may light perpetual shine upon them.
Hear thou my prayer.
To thee all flesh will come.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.

This recording is by the Opus 7 Vocal Ensemble, conducted by Loren Ponten.


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