Pärt, Arvo - Kanon Pokajanen
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The 'Kanon Pokajanen' (Canon of Repentance), premiered in March 1998, is Arvo Pärt’s most monumental composition.
Its prolonged genesis, a meticulous process of assimilation of the text in Church Slavonic, and the austerity and subtlety of its style embody the same sincerity, the same spiritual and contemplative radiance as an icon painting.
He was commissioned by KölnMusic GmbH to write a work commemorating the 750th anniversary of the building of Cologne Cathedral. He finished it in 1997 and it premiered at Cologne Cathedral on March 17, 1998.
'Kanon Pokajanen' exhibits characteristics of Pärt's tinntinabular style and the piece remains almost exclusively in D minor, deviating only in particularly expressive passages and sometimes final cadences. Overall, the melodies and harmonies remain fairly static throughout.