The scenic realization of Johannes Brahms’s »German Requiem« by Jochen Sandig and a team from Sasha Waltz & Guests is a milestone in the Rundfunkchor Berlin’s successful interdisciplinary series. Since its premiere in 2012 the »human requiem« has received overwhelming response all over the world. The production has made guest appearances in New York, Hong Kong, Athens, Brussels, Amsterdam, Granada and Adelaide.
In 2016 »human requiem« made the New York Times’ »The Best Classical Music” list and received the Classical:NEXT Innovation Award.
»I’m in tears … in the darkness, I heard your voice giving me the light, the hope, the love … this is the best that I have had in years.«
Composer Tan Dun, Brüssel 2016
Music, up close and personal: With »human requiem« the Rundfunkchor opened up a new dimension of musical experience. The division between the spaces for stage and audience is dissolved, the listening public does no longer sit in front of the sound but instead right in the middle of it, creating a new set of interrelationships between the text, the actual bodies of performers and listeners, the space and the sound.
»Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.« Jochen Sandig takes Brahms’ Requiem by its word. The proximity of the singers offers a sublime communal experience, thus enabling the audience to grasp the message of humanity with all senses. Within the community of singers and listeners this message becomes a space-filling and personal event: a »human requiem«. In an oft-cited letter to the conductor Carl Reinthaler, Brahms wrote in 1867: »As regards the text, I must confess that I would gladly leave off the ›German‹ and replace it simply with ›human‹.«