I knew I would have something better to write about. I do hate having negative things to say about choirs and CD’s so this post is more upbeat.
This 2005 CD is by that famous German choir, Der Dresdner Kreuzchor, and it’s called “Volkslieder” (folksongs), which is great for people who enjoy folk music, like me. There are 25 songs and many of them are quite short. One is only 61 seconds.
I want to quote a little something from the liner notes, “People kit themselves out with surround sound in their living rooms, CD and radio in their cars, MP3 players as they walk about, to be fed with synthetic sounds and perfect orchestral balance. Where can we find space for the original popular song, invented a long time ago, somewhere else and in some seemingly distant context, simply passed on from one singer to the next? More to the point: who can still sing such a song?”
The answer to that last question is Der Dresdner Kreuzchor. The writers go on to talk about the lyrics but the lyrics don’t mean much to those of us who don’t speak German. All of these songs are in German and are sung without instrumental accompaniment and it doesn’t matter at all. They are still really nice. I even recognized a couple of them, “Feinsliebchen” and “Der Mond ist Afugegangen”.
There are deeper, more mature voices on this CD but they are kept in the background, which is as it should be. The focus is on the treble voices. Altogether it’s a very rich sound and a lot of fun to listen to and another good thing about it is that, because it’s in German, I can’t sing along and ruin it.
The Dresdner Kreuzchor is from Dresden, Germany and goes back more than seven hundred years which makes it one of the oldest boys' choirs in Europe. It was founded as a school for Latin at the present Kreuzkirche (Church of the Holy Cross).
The choir has 150 members between the ages of 9 and 19. They perform mostly as a mixed boys' and men's choir, the number of singers depending on the works being performed. For guest performances, about 80 singers go on tour. Most of the boys live in a boarding school.