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Requiem for Solo Soprano, Mixed Choir, Organ and Orchestra

Title: Requiem for Solo Soprano, Mixed Choir, Organ and Orchestra.
Name(s): Ober, Reinhard, author
Kubik, Ladislav, professor directing dissertation
Corzine, Michael, outside committee member
Spencer, Peter, committee member
Mathes, James, committee member
College of Music, degree granting department
Florida State University, degree granting institution
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 2002
Publisher: Florida State University
Place of Publication: Tallahassee, Florida
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: The concept of this requiem is to combine the original text setting of the Missa pro defunctis (the Ordinarium ) with appropriate excerpts of a dream and the last letters of Cato Bontjes van Beek, a young German woman executed by the Nazis in 1943. Cato Bontjes van Beek, born on November 14th, 1920, in Bremen, arrested on September 20th, 1942, sentenced to death January 21st, 1943, and executed in Plötzensee on August 5th, 1943, was a very sensitive child from an artistic family, who detested the inhumane Nazi government. Because of short contact with a resistance group in Berlin, from which she distanced herself (" I am not a political person, I only want one thing, that is to be a human"), she was caught and sentenced to death. In her letters from prison to her family, she expresses her fears, hopes and her general humanity and Christian belief especially her love to all humankind without any reservation or hate. She believed in the good in all humans. In a dream a couple of years before her death, she experiences her own execution. This requiem concept combines the original texts of the Ordinarium with these two excerpts (the dream and the letters) in such a way that the main parts of the original Latin texts retain their original function and others interpolate with the German texts replacing partly the original text or adding to it. The decision of which texts should remain in the original form and which should be interpolated with the German texts was made in consideration of the liturgical function and the traditional treatment by other composers such as Mozart, Berlioz, Schumann, Verdi, Fauré, Duruflé, Britten and Penderecki. In this requiem the dramatic aspect is expressed using quotes from the Latin Sequence text interpolated with the German text of Cato's dream. The main aspect remains the comforting and the humanistic message expressed by the excerpts from Cato's last letters. These are added to the Offertorium, used as an additional part after the Benedictus and replace the Absolutio text. Introitus, Sanctus and Agnus Dei remain in their original form. The musical language is using free tonality and traditional contrapuntal techniques reaching to serial treatment in the sense of Alban Berg's lyrical expressionism as well as reminiscent of church modes. I also related to traditional archetype liturgical composition techniques such as isorhythm, declamation and organum. In this requiem the aspects of death, the fears, the comfort through God and Christ, and the belief in eternal life are expressed both generally and very ersonally – generally, through the expression of the Ordinarium text and personally through the humanistic message of a single fate. Both the general and personal aspects are represented by the mixed choir and the solo soprano.
Identifier: FSU_migr_etd-2324 (IID)
Submitted Note: A Dissertation Submitted to the School of Music in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Music.
Degree Awarded: Fall Semester, 2002.
Date of Defense: October 16, 2002.
Keywords: Mixed Chorus, Music Score, Requiem, Orchestra
Bibliography Note: Includes bibliographical references.
Advisory Committee: Ladislav Kubik, Professor Directing Dissertation; Michael Corzine, Outside Committee Member; Peter Spencer, Committee Member; James Mathes, Committee Member.
Subject(s): Music
Persistent Link to This Record:
Owner Institution: FSU

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Ober, R. (2002). Requiem for Solo Soprano, Mixed Choir, Organ and Orchestra. Retrieved from