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Requiem in Our Time, A

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Einojuhani Rautavaara

Einojuhani Rautavaara

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General Info

Year: 1958
Duration: c. 10:00
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Robert King Music
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $9.40


1. Dies Irae
2. Lacrymosa
3. Hymnus
4. Credo et dubito


Full Score
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Percussion, including:

  • Bell (not a glockenspiel)
  • Cymbals
  • Glockenspiel
  • Snare Drum
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

In 1954, Finnish composer Einouhani Rautavaara won the Thor Johnson Contest with his A Requiem in Our Time, which propelled him to international fame and earned him scholarships to continue his musical studies at Juilliard and Tanglewood. His early style, in which A Requiem was composed, is largely neoclassical.

The work comprises four movements, two of which have titles that correspond to movements of the Requiem mass -- Dies Irae and Lacrymosa. The other two movements are Hymnus (Hymn) and Credo et dubito (Belief and doubt). According to Rautavarra,

“I was still a student at the Sibelius Academy when I wrote this ‘breakthrough work’ that won an international composition competition in Cincinnati. The work is not a collective and apocalyptic 'Requiem for our time’, as the title has sometimes been rendered. It is in fact a very personal work dedicated to my mother, who died during the war; it explores the borderline between belief and doubt and concludes more in sorrow than in declamation. The ensemble prescribed for the competition -- four horns and trumpets, three trombones, baritone horn, tuba and percussion -- was so new and strange for me at that stage in my development that I still wonder at how confident the instrumental writing is.

- Program Note from University of Texas Wind Symphony concert program, 5 April 2019


  • Thor Johnson Brass Composition Award, First Prize, 1954.

Commercial Discography

State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of Iowa (Iowa City) Symphony Band (Richard Mark Heidel, conductor) - 4 May 2021
  • University of Texas (Austin) Wind Symphony (Scott Hanna, conductor) – 5 April 2019
  • Indiana University (Bloomington) Wind Ensemble (Rodney Dorsey, conductor) – 6 November 2018
  • University of Miami (Coral Gables) Frost Wind Ensemble (Robert Carnochan, conductor) – 30 November 2017
  • University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) Symphony Band Chamber Winds (Elliott Tackitt, conductor) – 6 October 2017
  • University of Oregon (Eugene) Wind Ensemble (Rodney Dorsey, conductor) – 22 November 2016

Works for Winds by This Composer