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Alexander Dimitrievich Kastalsky
1856 - 1926
A. Kastalsky
Alexander Kastalsky -Aleksandr Dmitrievic Kastal'skij- (28/11/1856 - 17/12/1926), a Russian composer, from Moscow. He studied with Tchaikovsky and Taneyev. He led a new and progressive movement in Russian church music and wrote a number of liturgical works.
Source:Grove's dictionary of music and musicians
Composed in:1900c
Musical form:fragments
Two songs for the orthodox Russian requiem, called Panikhida (Phanikhida).
Author:Herman Ram
Vyechnaya pamyat' geroyam
Composed in:1916
Musical form:free
In memory of:the fallen heroes of the Allied Army
Label(s):Russian Disc RD CD 10 043
Naxos 8.574245
Requiem Vyechnaya pamyat' geroyam ("Eternal memory to the heroes") contains:
1. Ekteniya, 7 stranitsy (pages)-- Litany
2. Alleluia i Glubinoyu mudrosti-- Alleluia and Thou who with wisdom profound
3. Pokoy, Spase nash'-- Give rest, our Saviour
4. Pokoy, Gospodi-- Give rest, O Lord
5. Molitvu proliyu-- Canon, Ode 6
6. So svyatymi upokoy-- With the saints give rest
7. Sam' yedin' yesi bezsmertnyy-- Thou only art immortal
8. Ty esi Bog'-- Thou art the God who descended into hell
9. Upokoy, Bozhe-- Give rest, O God
10. Troynaya ekteniya
11. Vechnaya pamyat'-- Memory eternal
Author:Don Hackenberry
Kastalsky's Requiem for the fallen heroes of the Allied Army was given at Birmingham on 22 November 1917, by the Festival Choral Society under Sir Henry J. Wood. It is an ambitious attempt to unite East end West in a solemn commemoration of the heroic dead. Ecclesiastical thems from the eastern Orthodox, western Catholic and Anglican liturgies are employed; and even the Hymn to India and the song of the Japanese soldiers are included. Kastalsky had in view the lofty but impracticable aim of a performance for which each of the allied nations should furnish its own choir. Though coldly received, it is a work of a highly cultured church musician of broadminded ideas.
Source:Grove's dictionary of music and musicians
In 1915 Russia was already at war with Germany and politicians were hoping against hope for a speedy end to the hostilities. It was easier said than done, however, because it may be a piece of cake to let the genie out of the bottle and a lot harder, if possible at all, to squeeze it back in... Each nation, sucked into the global conflagration, was paying its terrible price to that insatiable monster. The number of those killed and maimed was rising fast unfolding a tragedy of global proportions that defied any reasonable explanation...
In a bid to perpetualise the memory of the war victims, Russian composer Alexander Kastalsky decided to write a requiem that would blend together the historical and religious traditions of many nations.
"This is going to be a brotherly tribute to the memory of the heroes who fell in the great liberation battle against the Teutonic oppression" Kastalsky wrote about his new composition.
Alexander Kastalsky was thinking about a larger-than-life extravaganza where clerics, a choir, an orchestra, an organ and army units would come together in a grand show of unity and mourning. This is how the composer wanted it all to look like...
Allied units have all gathered around the memorial service. One can hear farewell tunes, Orthodox and Catholic alike, being alternatively sung in Russian, English, Romanian, Greek, Portuguese and other languages... The singing is occasionally interspersed with the sound of cannon fire and trumpets, bugles and drums being played by military bands. The wives and mothers of the fallen heroes are sobbing inconsolably to the strains of Japanese and Hindu songs being heard coming from the Asian units. Just as the "In Memory Everlasting" is announced, military bands strike up, the big guns salute the dead and the music brightens up in an uplifting tribute to the fallen heroes..." "Brethren, let us remember our brothers, husbands and sons, all members of our great union, who have sacrificed their lives in this sacred battle for the freedom and peace of the nations... Let us pray and ask the Lord to give them eternal peace in Heaven..." The Fraternal Tribute was the finest piece of music Alexander Kastalsky ever wrote...
Author:Olga Fyodorova