British masterpiece performed to recall end of WWII

8th May 2011, Comments 0 comments

Singers from across Europe on Sunday performed British composer Benjamin Britten's choral symphony War Requiem at a ceremony commemorating the end of World War II in Berlin on Sunday.

The 1,250-strong choir under the direction of British conductor Simon Hasley performed the masterpiece, first performed in May 1962 in Britain, which blends traditional Latin music and the war poetry of Wilfred Owen.

Owen, a British soldier who died in 1918 fighting in World War I, earned fame posthumously for his vivid descriptions of the horrors of combat.

The War Requiem reflects on the atrocities of war and offers a message of reconciliation.

The three solo roles are symbolically written for a Russian soprano, an English tenor, and a German baritone.

The performance is part of a "Sing Along" concert series hosted by the Berlin Rundfunkchor. The choir once a year invites amateur vocalists for a performance, preceded by hours of rehearsal.

The choir included singers from Britain, Denmark, France, Germany and the United States.

© 2011 AFP

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