Donizetti Requiem

Gaetano Donizetti (portrait by Giuseppe Rillosi)
Gaetano Donizetti (portrait by Giuseppe Rillosi)

Towards the end of this year, probably in November, Capital Choir will perform Gaetano Donizetti’s Messa da Requiem. Donizetti was one of the leading composers of the bel canto opera style in the first half of the nineteenth century, along with Gioachino Rossini and Vincenzo Bellini. He resolved to write a requiem mass during the final stages of rehearsal of Lucia di Lammermoor, when news reached him of his friend Bellini’s death. He seems to have completed the work promptly, but the the first known performance is as late as 1870.

We will be conducted by Sue Robinson, who has been appointed Guest Musical Director for 2016. Sue will take her first rehearsal on Tuesday, 24 May.

There are, as usual, various resources related to the Donizetti Requiem on the Web. Here is a recording on YouTube in the Italian style that Sue is aiming for:

This one is very clear and in tune, so good for note-learning:

This page has rehearsal files emphasised for each voice:

The files are in MP3 format rather than MIDI, and the voice parts have weird-sounding, computer-generated vowels and consonants, but the files should nevertheless be a good resource for those of us who are tone-challenged.