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Conversations with creators and organizers of the arts scene in West Michigan, hosted by Cara Lieurance

Kalamazoo Symphony preview: Brahms’ requiem provides a message of comfort for the living

The opening text of Brahms's German Requiem
Image: Daniel Keto
The opening text of Brahms's German Requiem

A concert at 7:30 pm on Saturday, Apr 15 in Chenery Auditorium will include a Mozart jewel paired with "Beethoven" written by an artificial intelligence program. But the main work is a masterpiece for solo singers, choir and orchestra by Johannes Brahms.

Brahms wrote a requiem, or mass for the dead, that was different from all others at the time. He threw out the traditional Latin text and carefully chose biblical verses that provided solace to the living. And the words were immediately understandable to his audience because he set the texts in German. In a conversation with Cara Lieurance, Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra conductor Julian Kuerti, Kalamazoo Bach Festival Chorus director Chris Ludwa and soprano Sarah Shafer explain why he did it, and how the final result is unforgettable.

Tickets and more information are available here.

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