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This article was published 23/10/2009 (2772 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
I Believe (Independent)
This unique Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra recording of Winnipeg composer/lyricist Zane Zalis' Holocaust oratorio resonates with conviction and the need to communicate unimaginable horrors -- and ultimately hope -- in a contemporary idiom. The disc includes all texts and notes about the production that was five years in the making, with the first-rate ensemble led by WSO's Alexander Mickelthwate.
Live performances don't always translate well to a recording, but this one successfully allows Zalis's compelling theatricality to emerge throughout the disc's 12 tracks. The children's chorus singing "fly away" in The Children tugs at your heartstrings while soloists Kelsey Cowie and Marc Devigne's gutsy vocals add emotional gravitas to What Now? A suspenseful Death March includes an ominous humming refrain as the men transform into a chorus of lost souls.
Last May's world premiere sold out. Those who couldn't get a ticket have another chance to check out this ever-timely work that speaks to all generations. 'Ö'Ö'Ö'Ö
-- Holly Harris