Westminster Cathedral Choir / James O'Donnell DURUFLÉ Requiem - Mass "Cum Jubilo"

For Maurice Duruflé (1902–1986) composition was a slow, laborious process involving constant revision and impeccable craftsmanship: only ten works have been published—one fewer than his teacher Paul Dukas, a similarly fastidious perfectionist. Unlike his friend and fellow-student Olivier Messiaen, Duruflé eschewed the avant-garde experimentation that might have resulted in a fashionable new language, choosing instead a retrospective stance, looking to plainsong for his inspiration, and great French composers—Debussy, Ravel, Fauré and Dukas—for his models. He was known to feel ‘incapable of adding anything significant to the piano repertory, viewing the string quartet with apprehension, and envisaging with terror the idea of composing a song after the finished examples of Schubert, Fauré and Debussy’. Instead Duruflé composed for his two favourite media, orchestra and organ (he was renowned as a virtuoso organist). (Hyperion)

'The Westminster Cathedral boys and men carry the lyricism and harmonic luxuriance to an ethereal plane. The choral singing is superb … helping one to bathe in Duruflé's sumptuous ideas' (The Daily Telegraph)

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