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Verdi’s great Missa da Requiem completed in 1874 is probably the best-known setting of the text. Hans von Bülow famously described it as ‘an opera in ecclesiastical dress’. A true vocal concert piece of the nineteenth-century tradition it is truly a requiem writ grand; it is filled with splendid horror, perhaps the most exhilarating of emotions, and as a result plays out as something which is much more than easy listening. As the concert launches the University’s 50th anniversary alumni weekend it is appropriate that three of the soloists – Marina, Joseph and Julian – are York alumni and the other, Yvonne, completes 40 years of teaching singing at the University in June 2013. A wonderful end to the season for both University Choir and Symphony Orchestra!