In "A German Requiem," great Romantic composer Johannes Brahms takes a tender and loving look at human existence. He intended this choral masterpiece to be music that uplifts and soothes. The title refers to the words, which are in German. Originally, Brahms had thought of calling this music "A Human Requiem." The texts come from Christian and Jewish scripture. Famous excerpts from this piece include the rich and lyrical "How lovely is they dwelling place," and the final chorus, which radiates peace.
On Feb. 18 and 19, JoAnn Falletta is conducting the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus in what promises to be a stellar performance of this warm, rich creation. The performance features soprano Deborah Selig and bass-baritone Darren Stokes. Buffalo knows Stokes. He was Salieri in the BPO's production of Rimsky-Korsakov's "Mozart and Salieri," and he was also the soloist in Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Selig has made appearances at Chautauqua in recent years.
Besides the Brahms, the concert features two pieces by Hungarian composer Zoltan Kodaly. "Dances of Marosszek" and the "'Peacock' Variations," based on a Hungarian folk song.
Stokes and Selig will be giving a master class at Kleinhans Music Hall at 7 p.m. Feb. 15. The master class is free and open to the public.
The concert takes place at 8 p.m. Feb. 18 and 2:30 p.m. Feb. 19 at Kleinhans Music Hall. Admission ranges from $29 to $82. Call 885-5000, or visit bpo.org.