Brahms memorial

Death of Brahms

Today, April 3rd, is the 116th anniversary of the death of Johannes Brahms in Vienna. He died in 1897.

I am sure that you have learned from my posts that Brahms and Mozart are two of my great favorites. What is also true is that the Brahms Requiem, and the Mozart Requiem have a special place for me. Why?

The Brahms Requiem was composed in memory of Brahms’ mother. He had a lot of outside pressure to revise this work and to include various catholic themes. His answer was that that the work is in tribute to his mother, and Brahms chose some of his favorite texts from the Old Testament for this purpose.

Mozart was in a desperate financial situation at the end of his life, and he took on a commission that he had never completed to compose his Requiem. One of his students selected material to bring the work to listeners in the following generations.

Here’s what we get on this album of two DVD’s:


  • Ein Deutsches Requiem, Op. 45
  • Begräbnisgesang, Op. 13


  • Requiem in D minor, K626 (completed by Duncan Druce)
  • Masonic Funeral Music in C minor, K477

Performed by the London Classical Players, conducted by Roger Norrington

Here is the Kölner Philharmonie of Germany, in Johannes Brahms: “Ein Deutsches Requiem”, conducted by: Semyon Bychkov (Full length!) Magnifiscent!


And here’s a different group performing the same work:

Johannes Brahms: Ein Deutsches Requiem, with Barbara Bonney, soprano, and Claudio Abbado, conductor of the Berliner Philharmoniker; Recorded at the Musikverein, Vienna, 3 April 1997. (The 100th anniversary of Brahms’ death)

Finally, in Honor of the 116th anniversary of Brahms’ death, it is appropriate that we listen to another Requiem: the one by Mozart. Here is the complete Mozart Requiem with Cecilia Bartoli as soloist, conducted by George Solti in 1991, on the 200th anniversary of Mozart’s death: (Music starts at 06:20)

Tags: Death of Brahms, April 3 1897, Brahms, Mozart, Requiem

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *