Kleiberg’s Requiem performed in Washington on 11 September

An extended version of Ståle Kleiberg’s Requiem – for victims of Nazi persecution will be performed at the National Cathedral in Washington on 11 September this year. The Requiem, with newly written lyrics by the Scottish poet Edwin Morgan, will be the cathedral’s main event on the historic day.

Ståle Kleiberg

Washington National Cathedral is the world’s 6th largest cathedral and one of the main centres for church music world-wide. After 11 September, it has also become an important arena and voice for peace in the American society.

Norwegian composer Kleiberg’s Requiem – for victims of Nazi persecution will fit well with the cathedral’s peace message. The requiem was written in memory of the victims who died because of their ethnic origin or sexual orientation during the German Nazi regime. It is a central work in Kleiberg's production. In addition to the parts from the Latin Mass, new lyrics by the Scottish poet and play writer Edwin Morgan are included. Kleiberg asked Morgan to write three lyrics shaped as short stories told by a representative from three discriminated groups: Jews, gypsies, and homosexuals.

Music director at the Cathedral, Michael McCarthy will conduct the Washington National Cathedral Choir and international soloists.

In addition to the concert, McCarthy also wishes to make a recording of the performance. Days for recording are planned in June, and the CD will be released on 11 September 2004.

Requiem – for victims of Nazi persecution is the main work in a trilogy on the same theme. The trilogy also includes the orchestral work Lamento: Cissi Klein in memoriam and Dopo.

Composer Ståle Kleiberg was born in Stavanger in 1958. He graduated from the University of Oslo with a degree in musicology and later from the Norwegian State Academy of Music with a diploma degree in composition. In addition Kleiberg has studied in England. His output ranges from chamber music to works for full orchestra; a number of these are the result of commissions from leading orchestras and ensembles. In 1999 Kleiberg was awarded the Fartein Valen Prize, and was composer-in-residence during the Valen Days the following year.

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