MusicAeterna – Teodor Currentzis conductor – Zarina Abaeva soprano – Hermine May mezzo – René Barbera tenor – Tareq Nazmi bass
Messa da Requiem Giuseppe Verdi
On the 22nd of May 1873, Alessandro Manzoni, the great Risorgimento (Italian reunification) poet died aged 88 after a fall on the steps of the Church of San Fedele in Milan. Less than two weeks later, Verdi informed his editor Guilio Ricordi that he wanted to compose a Messa da Requiem in honour of the recently-deceased poet, whose patriotic convictions he shared. The outcome of his efforts is one of the most beautiful examples of the genre. The music was so expressive that some even called it “an opera in ecclesiastical robes”. Verdi incorporated all the musical resources he had at his disposal after composing twenty-six operas.