Ritchie: Survivors Aquarius Choir & Marc Michael de Smet
- Anthony Ritchie (b. 1960): The Survivor, Op. 186:
- 1The Survivor, Op. 18606:33
- Song of Hope, Op. 103:
- 2Song of Hope, Op. 10303:00
- Ellen's Vigil, Op. 190:
- 3Ellen's Vigil, Op. 19003:35
- Salaam, Op. 172:
- 4Salaam, Op. 172: No. 1, Is It True?04:53
- 5Salaam, Op. 172: No. 2, Hunger Strike Poem03:58
- 6Salaam, Op. 172: No. 3, Ode to the Sea09:52
- 7Salaam, Op. 172: No. 4, Even if the Pain02:27
- As Long as Time, Op. 47:
- 8As Long as Time, Op. 47: No. 1, Timepiece03:00
- 9As Long as Time, Op. 47: No. 4, We Could Just Disappear02:23
- Widow's Songs, Op. 110:
- 10Widow's Songs, Op. 110: No. 1, Over the Back02:27
- 11Widow's Songs, Op. 110: No. 2, Bread02:50
- 12Widow's Songs, Op. 110: No. 3, Frost03:34
- This Sea We Cross Over, Op. 148:
- 13This Sea We Cross Over, Op. 14804:17
- Mountains and Rivers, Op. 154:
- 14Mountains and Rivers, Op. 154: No. 2, A Prayer03:07
- 15Mountains and Rivers, Op. 154: No. 3, The End03:40
Info for Ritchie: Survivors
The Survivor was requested by Marc Michael de Smet, the Musical Director of the choir Aquarius, from Belgium. It was written for performances in Belgium, and also for inclusion on a CD recording of choral works by Anthony Ritchie, entitled ‘Survivors’ (to be released by Atoll, 2017).
The famous poem by Levi was written as a result of his experiences in Auschwitz in 1944-45. Levi escaped death, but was haunted by traumatic memories for the rest of his life. In The Survivor, Levi dreams of his lost companions at Auschwitz, their faces in the dust and the mist. He tells them to leave his mind, and is haunted by feelings of guilt at being a survivor while others died. The song is unified by a recurring refrain "Once more he sees his companions' faces".
Musical director of Aquarius, Marc Michael de Smet, quotes Salaam as an example of perfect choral writing. "The vocal lines are perfectly shaped for the singers, the use of the harmonic and rhythmic spectrum is never over complex, and the structures are very clear. Anthony Ritchie has the gift of expressiveness and of straight and strong communication.''
He compliments the composer highly: "[He] is not the type of composer to be losing himself in intellectual highbrow experiments. His art couldn't be clearer and more effective. He is sincere and you can rely on him.''
"Great praise for performers and composer." (Geoff Adams)
Marc Michael de Smet, director
In our 21st century, irreversible evolutions will shake and redraw the arts’ landscape even more. In our globalised universe, all cultural expressions are permeated by each other. Classical music merges with jazz, pop and world music. Europe will disappear as a cultural leader. Music from the far and nearby past is very much alive. Contemporary music is how it has always been and should always be: innovative, shocking and directive. This ‘clash of cultures’ provides dynamics never seen before and a whirling, ominous yet amazing future.
The chamber choir Aquarius embraces this age and participates in this exciting, confusing and gaudy shift, where old and new, classical and popular, sacred and secular, progressive and conservative are combined.
Founded in 1995 under the name of Goeyvaerts Consort, since 2007 as Aquarius, this ensemble has expanded its vision is to embrace all forms of contemporary music in a global musical offering that rises above all categories and specialities. We have already given hundreds of concerts, home and abroad, and produced 15 CDs and DVDs. Aquarius was founded and is currently conducted by Marc Michael De Smet, a fervent defender of contemporary and Flemish music.