Szathmáry, Zsigmond
Dies irae for Organ and Percussion
- Challenging new music for organ and percussion, including sirens
- Medieval imagery in modern sonic garb
- A musical reckoning with the past
Date of publication
Edition no.
BA 11258
Volume / Series
Organova 14
Instrumentation of the work
Organ, Drums
Language(s) of text
Product format
Performance score
Organ, Drums
Zsigmond Szathmáry’s “Dies irae” for organ and percussion produces an immense impact on listeners with its advanced sonorities.
Accordingly, it imposes very high demands on the performers.

“Dies irae, dies illa, solvet saeclum in favilla” (Day of wrath, that day, will dissolve the world in ashes) comprises a 17-stanza medieval sequence dealing with Judgment Day that forms the emotional climax of the Latin Mass for the Dead. In his commentary on this work, the composer describes his childhood memories of the Second World War: “Fear, air-raid shelters, thin caraway soup and the howling of sirens”. The latter even find their way into the piece itself.
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