Lachner, Franz


Lachner, Franz

Requiem Op. 146 (Vocal Score)

Art.-Nr.: 442b Kategorien: ,



Lachner, Franz

Requiem in D minor op. 146 (1856, rev. 1871)
(Vocal Score)

for two sopranos, alto, two tenors, bass, four-voice chorus and orchestra

On 2 April 1856 Franz Lachner, the doyen of composers and conductors in southern Germany, stepped to the rostrum of the Odeon in Munich. The occasion was auspicious: it was his birthday and name day, and the program consisted entirely of his own music, the first such occasion in his twenty years as a conductor in the Bavarian capital. The heart of the program was a new work clearly written in memory of, and in deference to, Wolfgang Amadé Mozart, the centenary of whose birth was being celebrated that same year: the Requiem in D minor. Its effect on the public was electrifying: the audience was convinced that they had witnessed the birth of a new masterpiece. Banquets were held in Lachner’s honor, and the Münchner Neueste Nachrichten of 4 April gave expression to the words on everyone’s lips:

«It is not going too far to place this work, in the power and nobility of its conception and the beauty of its rigorous contrapuntal design, directly alongside Cherubini’s Requiem, which, after Mozart’s, is considered so far to be the most perfect of its kind. In truth, the appearance of this creation of genius is a source of delight, particular in an age such as ours, in which mindless frivolity or high-strung overtension grows more prevalent from day to day.»

It was perhaps the greatest success in Lachner’s long life. Yet a mere eight years later his career in Munich came to a sudden halt and he was forced to enter an early retirement. What had happened?

Franz Lachner was the most gifted of a generation of musical children born to a poor family in rural Bavaria. In his early twenties he traveled to Vienna, where he studied with Simon Sechter and became an intimate friend of Schubert (later biographers made pilgrimages to Lachner as a source of lively Schubert anecdotes). His life even impinged briefly on that of the great Beethoven when he was commissioned by a Viennese publisher to prepare of vocal score and piano four-hand arrangement of the Missa Solemnis. The publication never came about, but Lachner’s standards and qualifications were now set at the highest level. By 1836 he had been made a conductor at the Court Opera and the Academy of Music in Munich. He rose to become general music director at the Opera (1852) and a leading figure in Bavaria’s intellectual life, receiving an honorary doctorate from Munich University (1853) and enjoying friendships with Eduard Mörike and Moritz von Schwind, among others. He raised the opera’s orchestra to a pitch of perfection and was admired by all for his abilities as a conductor, even earning grudging praise from the congenitally hypercritical Hans von Bülow. He conducted the Munich premières of Tannhäuser (1855) and Lohengrin (1858) at a time when Wagner was still a political exile in Switzerland. He also turned out a voluminous body of compositions – symphonies, chamber music, a cappella church pieces – that led Schumann to call him «the most talented and knowledgeable of all composers in southern Germany.»

For more information on the piece:

Read the preface to the full score / das Vorwort zur Partitur lesen > HERE

Score Data

Partitur Nr.



Repertoire Explorer


Chor/Gesang & Orchester


225 x 320 mm


Vocal Score



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