My friend recently picked up a book of Gabriel Fauré's music scored for piano. I borrowed it to see if any of it was playable with my limited skills, and it turns out I could conceivably play several movements from Fauré's Requiem — among other pieces. I was thrilled.

I hadn't listened to it in a while and I was reminded just how lovely the Fauré Requiem is. It's interesting since he had no point in writing it other than to see what he could come up with for this classical form. Despite that, Fauré produced one of the most tranquil and peaceful Requiems I've ever heard. There's really very little bombast here, and while bombast has it's place, sometimes it's nice just to have something to sooth you. It's worth a listen if you get a chance.

Fauré - Pie Jesu
London Musici, Richard Marlow Conducting

In terms of versions, I'm not too fussy on big orchestras playing this. The delicate nature of the music lends itself well to a smaller ensemble. This version featuring Richard Marlow conducting London Musici and the Choir of Trinity College Cambridge is pretty well perfect in my opinion. That, and the fact that it's couple with some great Maurice Duruflé's pieces make this Conifer Classics recording one of my favorites.

Now I better go practice the Agnus Dei.

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3 responses »

  1. I hadn't heard this before – it's beautiful! Thankyou!

  2. Mistergone says:

    Happy to share! I discovered this piece a while back and have always been astounded by the tranquility of it. Unfortunately, it's with pieces like this that I often hear the common refrain that "I like classical music because it's relaxing." I find it insulting that people sleep to classical music when it offers such depth — so much to hold your attention. And yet this piece in particular is a staple of albums like "the most relaxing classical music album in the world" but it's not warranted. Yes, it's quiet, but it's so stunningly beautiful I'd be hard-pressed to fall asleep while listening.So I'm happy to know there are others out there, like the people in this group, who love classical for the beauty of it! Cheers!

  3. I always think it's a shame when I come across people whose only exposure to classical music is through relaxation CDs. Or who have become so fixated with one small element of the world of music that they can't see the beauty that lies beyond their own narrow vision (a couple of the men I work with are completely fixated with guitar rockers. If I get either of them for the Secret Santa this year, I intend to introduce them to classical guitar. They might be able to see the value in that.). Mind you, I also have troubles understanding how people could be happy with only a small handful of CDs instead of the 200+ that I couldn't bear to part with. There is so much variety and beauty outside of modern music (one century and a little bit of modern music, versus how many centuries of classical music? Out of which we've creamed the best?).

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