HAVPCD234 – Duruflé Requiem Music for St-Étienne-du-Mont
Maurice Duruflé was born in Louviers, Normandy, but spent most of his life in Paris. He became a student at the Paris Conservatoire, where he won five First Prizes, and where he later became Professor for 26 years. He was assistant organist at Ste-Clotilde and at Notre-Dame Cathedral, becoming organist at St-Étienne-du-Mont from 1930 – a post he held until his death. In his Requiem, Duruflé truly reveals himself as the spiritual heir to Tournemire, finding inspiration in the treasure-house of Gregorian melodies: transporting them with embellishments and counterpoint, yet still retaining their essentially non-rhythmic, fluid, and improvisatory qualities. Madame Duruflé once said that this work is her husband’s finest and most personal expression of his faith in the Resurrection.