War Dreams


ensemble cantissimo
Raschèr Saxophone Quartet
Markus Utz

War and Peace exist in a highly charged relationship. Music, especially vocal music, represents one of the most important means of reconciliation, and gives meaningful expression to the hope for peace. The choral group ensemble cantissimo and the Raschèr Saxophone Quartet address this theme with a fine selection of works from different eras. A moving plea from two outstanding musical groups.

Release: March 2017




01 WILLIAM BYRD: Ne irascaris Domine
02 ZACHARY WADSWORTH: War-Dreams (2011)
03 ARVO PÄRT: Da pacem Domine – für Saxophonquartett (Arr. RSQ)
04 aus »Drei Volkslieder« (1928): Herzlieblich Lieb, durch Scheiden
05 aus: »Drei Volkslieder« (1928): Schein uns, du liebe Sonne
06 Dreimal tausend Jahre op. 50 a (1950)
07 HANNS EISLER: Liturgie vom Hauch op. 21,1 (1930)
Quartett für Klarinette und Streichtrio: IV. Abschied (Larghetto)
MICHAEL TIPPETT aus »A Child of our time« – Five Negro Spirituals für Solo-Quartett und Chor (1943):
09 Steel away
10 Nobody knows the trouble I see
11 Go down, Moses
12 O, by and by
13 Deep river
14 BERND FRANKE, nach einem Text von Giovanni Pico della Mirandola:
On the Dignity of Man (Über die Würde des Menschen) für Chor und Saxophonquartett

Total Time: 69:07

Booklet in German and English language (36 pages)

P+C 2016 Spektral, LC 15543
Best.-Nr. SRL4-16149
EAN: 4260130381493


ensemble cantissimo

Founded in 1994, ensemble cantissimo is one of the most sought-after vocal ensembles in the German-speaking world. The name speaks for itself: cantissimo is synonymous with a cappella singing. Along with the usual performances of older music, a primary interest has always been the discovery of unperformed music that lies outside the regular repertoire. With its distinctive interpretations and exciting choice of programmes, the choir, with singers from Germany and Switzerland, conducted by Markus Utz, has thrilled audiences and critics alike. Regular invitations to leading music festivals and a close collaboration with radio stations reflect the high regard the ensemble’s vocal artistry is held in. Rarities of rediscovered choral music also feature on cantissimo’s numerous CD recordings. These include sacred works by Mozart’s teacher Giovanni Battista Martini (2007) and the Marian cycle Mater Dei by Freiburg composer Franz Philipp (2008) produced in collaboration with SWR. A co-production with BR, I Himmelen, with Scandinavian choral music was released in 2010. In 2011 Carus-Verlag Stuttgart engaged the ensemble for the first recording of the choral works of Heinrich von Herzogenberg, a contemporary of Brahms; this now comprises a representative selection of his works on three CDs.


Raschèr Saxophone Quartet

The Raschèr Saxophone Quartet members have been called “uncrowned kings of the saxophone world” by the Wiener Zeitung. And in the words of a critic from Die Welt, “if there were an Olympic category for virtuoso wind playing, the Raschèr Saxophone Quartet from the USA would certainly win a gold medal”. The Raschèr Saxophone Quartet has been a constant presence in the major concert halls of the United States, Asia, and Europe since its founding in 1969. It represents the continuation of a tradition begun in the 1930s by Sigurd Raschèr, who was a pioneer of classical saxophone playing as well as the the quartet’s founder. He inspired many composers to write pieces for him, and the quartet he founded has also been the dedicatee of works by over 350 composers, including Aho, Berio, Bergman, Bialas, Dean, Donatoni, Franke, Glass, Gubaidulina, Kagel, Kancheli, as well as Fazil Say, Lera Auerbach and Iannis Xenakis.
Many composers have been deeply impressed by the superbly homogeneous tonal quality and virtuosity achieved by the quartet’s four members, as well as their dynamic interpretations of a wide range of music both new and old. Concerning their performances of Bach, the scholarly authority Ulrich Dibelius wrote: “The music attains a seraphic quality – as though organ sonorities have been combined with the sound of a string quartet”.
A large number of composers have been intrigued by the idea of combining the sound of the Raschèrs with an orchestra. To date, there have been more than 40 new works for saxophone quartet and orchestra. These works have been performed by many outstanding ensembles including broadcasting orchestras from the BBC, RAI, MDR, WDR, and SWR. The list of orchestras also boasts the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the Dresden Staatskapelle, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Helsinki Philharmonic, and the Hong Kong, Taipei, and Adelaide Symphony Orchestras.
Christine Rall, soprano saxophone
Elliot Riley, alto saxophone
Andreas van Zoelen, tenor saxophone
Kenneth Coon, baritone saxophone


Markus Utz

Markus Utz has been a professor of conducting and choral directing at the University of the Arts in Zurich since 2007. From 2001 to 2008 he served as regional cantor and music director of the Constance Cathedral, where he still continues working as an organist. He studied in Munich, Detmold and Stockholm with Gerhard Weinberger, Anders Eby, Stefan Parkman, Eric Ericson, and others. He has competed successfully as an organist and has also received conducting grants from the Scandinavian Bach Academy, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), and was a finalist in the 2003 Eric Ericson Award. One of the most successful young German choral conductors of today, both in Germany and abroad, Markus Utz has established a formidable presence in the music world with his ensemble cantissimo and is noted for performances that are both refined and full of character. In addition to his activities as professor and organist, he has been invited to teach courses and serve on juries in the United States, Sweden, Italy, France, Germany, Israel, and Switzerland. He has also guest conducted many well-known choral groups.

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