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Mccullough: Holocaust Cantata / Master Chorale Of Washington


Release Date: 11/23/1999 
Label:  Albany Records   Catalog #: 352   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Donald McCulloughSzymon LaksMichael Horvit
Performer:  Robert Lamar SimsMiriam Bolkosky
Conductor:  Donald McCullough
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Master Chorale of Washington Chamber Singers
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 8 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

It is well-known that during the Holocaust inmates wrote music while incarcerated in concentration camps. What about the music that was composed by the common man in these camps? Music embraced by the whole community and passed secretly by aural transmission - music that carried with it powerful words revealing different aspects of camp life, or expressing the inmates' innermost feelings, of mourning, resistance, or patriotism? Was there another Holocaust music from the one we are more familiar with today? Was there a music that spoke with startling immediacy to express the agony of the victims of the Nazi regime? It was this question that first led Donald McCullough on a year-long journey through one of the cruelest chapters of the 20th Read more century. His quest, to extract from the mammoth archives of the United States Holocaust Museum, the material that formed the basis of the Holocaust Cantata , was, like all difficult endeavors, marked with equal amounts of intuition and good luck. The result is the music heard on this disc.

REVIEW:

"There is no shortage of musical works inspired by the savagery of Adolf Hitler's Germany, but, even among the many, this remarkable cantata stands out. It is special because for the most part the victims are allowed to speak for themselves via their own music. Donald McCullough, director of Washington DC's Master Chorale, crafted the piece after immersing himself in the Aleksander Kulisiewicz Collection at the US Holocaust Museum. Imprisoned for antifascist activities in Poland, Mr. Kulisiewicz spent the war at the Sachsenhausen camp near Berlin where, the informative notes tell us, "he took on the role of camp troubadour, performing his own songs and those of his fellow prisoners." After the War, he crisscrossed the former Reich compiling music that had been composed by inmates of the camps. McCullough had several compositions from the Kulisiewicz Collection translated (with reverence) into English and proceeded to set them for chorus, occasional soloists, cello and piano. His arrangements, interspersed with writings by those forced to endure the unendurable make for a gripping commentary on the resilience of gentle souls caught in the vortex of human depravity at its worst. The songs, as you'd expect, are heart-rendering in their simplicity and their sadness....I pray with all my heart that the nobility of Donald McCullough's work has brought a measure of rest to Kulisiewicz's eternal soul." (American Record Guide)
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Works on This Recording

1.
Holocaust Cantata by Donald McCullough
Performer:  Robert Lamar Sims (Piano)
Conductor:  Donald McCullough
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Master Chorale of Washington Chamber Singers
Period: 20th Century 
Written: by 1998; USA 
Date of Recording: 05/1999 
Venue:  St. Luke Catholic Church, McLean, VA 
Length: 43 Minutes 32 Secs. 
Language: English 
2.
Passacaille-vocalise by Szymon Laks
Performer:  Robert Lamar Sims (Piano), Miriam Bolkosky (Cello)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1946; Poland 
Date of Recording: 05/1999 
Venue:  St. Luke Catholic Church, McLean, VA 
Length: 6 Minutes 2 Secs. 
3.
Even When God is Silent by Michael Horvit
Conductor:  Donald McCullough
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Master Chorale of Washington Chamber Singers
Period: 20th Century 
Written: USA 
Date of Recording: 05/1999 
Venue:  St. Luke Catholic Church, McLean, VA 
Length: 2 Minutes 36 Secs. 
Language: English 
4.
A Child's Journey by Michael Horvit
Conductor:  Donald McCullough
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Master Chorale of Washington Chamber Singers
Period: 20th Century 
Written: USA 
Date of Recording: 05/1999 
Venue:  St. Luke Catholic Church, McLean, VA 
Length: 5 Minutes 52 Secs. 
Language: English 
5.
Is not a flower a mystery? by Donald McCullough
Conductor:  Donald McCullough
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Master Chorale of Washington Chamber Singers
Period: 20th Century 
Written: USA 
Date of Recording: 05/1999 
Venue:  St. Luke Catholic Church, McLean, VA 
Length: 4 Minutes 5 Secs. 
6.
We remember them by Donald McCullough
Conductor:  Donald McCullough
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Master Chorale of Washington Chamber Singers
Period: 20th Century 
Written: USA 
Date of Recording: 05/1999 
Venue:  St. Luke Catholic Church, McLean, VA 
Length: 5 Minutes 25 Secs. 
Language: English 

Sound Samples

Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): The Prisoner Rises
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): Singing Saved My Life
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): Song of the Polish Prisoners
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): The Execution of the Twelve
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): In Buchenwald
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): A State of Separation
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): The Train
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): Singing from Birth to Death
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): The Striped Ones
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): There's No Life Like Life at Auschwitz
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): Tempo di Tango
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): Letter to Mom
Holocaust Cantata (Songs from the Camps): Song of Days Now Gone
Passacaille-vocalise (arr. for cello and piano)
Even When God Is Silent
A Child's Journey: I. An Accidental Meeting
A Child's Journey: II. I Once Had A Friend
A Child's Journey: III. There Are No Stars In The Sky
Is Not a Flower a Mystery?
We Remember Them

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