You can now read 10 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

The Boston Globe

Music

cLASSICAL nOTES

Cantata Singers to perform enigmatic Howells Requiem

David Hoose, music director of the Cantata Singers, noticed something unusual when he began to study the Requiem by Herbert Howells, a British composer known chiefly for liturgical music. He became interested in the Requiem, written for unaccompanied voices, because of another Howells piece — “Take Him, Earth, for Cherishing,” written in memory of President Kennedy — that the Cantata Singers performed two seasons ago. Even though he knew nothing of the Requiem’s background, he found something about the music odd.

“I kept having this feeling in the piece that there was something reluctant about the music,” said Hoose by phone recently. “I’d never had this feeling in a piece before. It was almost as if he were hesitating to put down that next note, that next harmony, that next decision. Not uncertainty, but hesitancy — not wanting to do it.”

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week