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Album Review: Requiem
Michael Hoppé
Cover image of the album Requiem by Michael Hoppé
Michael Hoppé
2006 / Hearts of Space
42 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
Michael Hoppé continues his tradition of creating profoundly emotional music that comes from the heart and goes deep into the soul of the listener. Hoppé’s compositions are polished to shimmering perfection with his background keyboards, but it is the voices of soprano Heidi Fielding and tenor Dwain Briggs and Martin Tillman’s soulful cello that bring the music to life. The other instrumentalists are Chris Bleth on oboe, Bernadette Allbaugh on clarinet, and Alyssa Park and Lilly Hayden on violin, each adding his or her own sensitive touch to the music. Created as a follow-up to Hoppé’s 2003 Grammy-nominated CD, Solace, Requiem offers “wings for the passage of the soul.” I expected this album to be very dark and a bit depressing, but it is instead incredibly serene and full of hope. In Hoppé’s own words,”I wanted Requiem to embrace intimacy, peace, and serenity, and although it is not a complete setting of the Missa Pro Defunctis as stated in the Catholic liturgy, I have used the Latin text I felt represented these characteristics.” Obviously not party music, this is a CD to transport the listener to a place of peace and healing. Very classical in structure and approach, the one word I would use to describe Requiem is “stunning.” The beauty and grace of the music are absolutely amazing. In a recent email, Michael Hoppé mentioned that he thinks this is his best work, and I would have to agree. His fourteenth release to date, Requiem is another masterpiece from one of my very favorite artists. I give this CD my highest recommendation. It is available from amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com
May 22, 2006