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John Tavener’s memory eternal.

From Guardian Music [The Guardian] – TAVENER’S TURN TO a world of spirituality, via the Russian Orthodox church, was the inspiration for much of his music of the late 1970s onwards, and it produced a whole series of works of celestial simplicity and often heavenly length: longest of all his seven-hour dusk-to-dawn vigil, The Veil of the Temple, composed in 2003.

But it was this spiritualising tendency that turned critical opinion against him. Tavener was branded a “holy minimalist”, a phrase that condemned some of his more accessible choral music to collections of “Relaxing Classics”, as if what he was doing as a composer was cynically tapping into cheap, superficial New-Ageism.

Nothing could be further from the truth. The most popular pieces of Tavener’s, like The Lamb, were often written as personal tributes to friends or family without a thought for their populist potential; his much more dissonant and demanding larger scale works like Ultimos Ritos or his opera for Covent Garden, Thérèse, have not been performed as often as they should be.

Continued at The Guardian | YouTube playlist | More Chronicle & Notices.

 

 

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