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Rachmaninoff: All-Night Vigil Review

Photo by Bryan Dahl.

Though Rachmaninoff is remembered for his epic compositions and performances at the piano, among his favorite works was his choral setting of the orthodox liturgy, The All-Night Vigil. It stands out not only from his instrumental music but among all choral works for the incredibly demanding range of voices required. 

Eager for the challenge, the San Diego Master Chorale has long awaited the occasion to present this tremendous piece. Before a sold out audience, in the beautiful setting of Saints Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church, music director John Russel and the chorale gave a stellar performance worthy of this music’s legacy. Its soaring climaxes and haunting depths are made possible by the choir singing as many as eleven different notes together, requiring a massive ensemble agile enough to navigate both the racing passages and epically low, rumbling bass notes. 

Read Bryan Dahl’s full review on Discover Magazines here.