Thunderous rage and soft, tremulous prayers reverberate in the Orpheum Theatre with Vancouver Bach Choir
The Vancouver Academy of Music Symphony Orchestra (VAMSO) combines forces with Vancouver Bach Choir to present one of the most celebrated Romantic masterworks, Verdi’s Requiem. This formidable funeral mass resounds under the direction of Leslie Dala with Joslin Romphf Dennis (soprano), Leah Giselle Field (mezzo-soprano), Frédérik Robert (tenor), and Alan Corbishley (bass).
“The absence of costumes and staging by no means precludes Verdi’s Requiem from generating an experience any less dramatically compelling than his operas,” says Joseph Elworthy, Executive Director of the Vancouver Academy of Music. “From riotous outcries to quiet, trembling devotions, this massive work vividly captures a gripping pathos with sudden contrasts between sharply conflicting emotions.”
The origin of this concert mass stems from Verdi’s desire for a project involving several leading Italian composers collaborating to create a requiem in memory of Gioachino Rossini, regarded by Verdi as “one of the glories of Italy”. Verdi himself contributed the final movement, yet it never materialized as a memorial to his predecessor as planned; instead, the movement was expanded into the complete Requiem following the death of Alessandro Manzoni, a celebrated Italian poet and humanitarian and a second national figure whom Verdi viewed with great admiration.
Adapting his mastery of opera into a genre that forgoes visual staging, Verdi captures vibrant visual effects through sound: sharp strikes of the bass drum resonate with the sheer force of thunder in Dies Irae and the faint calling of off-stage trumpets in Tuba mirum grow into a fanfare that evoke the image of a mighty, majestic throne. Intricate theatrical threads are woven in long, dramatic arcs by the baton of Leslie Dala, director of both VAM Symphony Orchestra and Vancouver Bach Choir, in a work which Johannes Brahms declaimed “only a genius could have written”.
About Vancouver Academy of Music (vam.ca):
Founded in 1969, the Vancouver Academy of Music (VAM) is a non-profit institution that has been spreading a love of learning and musical excellence for generations of aspiring musicians. Located minutes away from downtown, VAM’s spacious facility features teaching studios, expansive classrooms, a library, and two recital halls – all set against the scenic backdrop of Vanier Park.
VAM’s fundamental purpose is to explore the transformative power of music through fostering an inclusive learning environment led by a team of devoted faculty with strong professional backgrounds. From Early Childhood Education to adult learning, VAM delivers world-class music education to students of all ages and abilities.
In addition to private lessons and class instruction, VAM students engage with world-renowned visiting artists in master classes, cooperate with other national and international music education organizations, and participate in numerous performances and competitions. VAM’s Orchestral Training Program is home to four levels of orchestra, which culminates in the Orpheum Series – four concerts that spotlight the VAM Symphony Orchestra in one of Vancouver’s most iconic cultural venues, the Orpheum Theatre.
VAM Symphony Orchestra: Verdi’s Requiem
When: Sunday, November 12, 2017 at 2pm
Where: Orpheum Theatre, 601 Smithe St
Tickets: $15 Adults, $10 Students & Seniors, available at vamso.ca