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FULL The Passion According to St. Matthew (Hilarion Alfeyev) Moscow 2007 Vladimir Fedoseyev, Viktor Shilovsky, Olga Shalaewa, Andrei Nemzer, Alexei Tikhomirov

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  • Video Recording from: vk     FULL VIDEO
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Hilarion (secular name Grigory Valerievich Alfeyev, Russian: Григо́рий Вале́риевич Алфе́ев; 24 July 1966) is a bishop of the Russian Orthodox Church and the current metropolitan of Budapest and Hungary. He is also a noted theologian, church historian and composer and has published books on dogmatic theology, patristics and church history as well as numerous compositions for choir and orchestra.

During 2009-2022 he was the titular metropolitan of Volokolamsk, the chairman of the Department for External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate and a permanent member of the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church and rector of the church-wide postgraduate and doctoral studies named after Saints Cyril and Methodius Equal to the Apostles.

In June 2022, following a meeting of the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church, Hilarion was removed from his position as president of the Department of External Church Relations of the Patriarchate of Moscow and dismissed as Metropolitan of Volokolamsk. He was appointed to the Metropolis of Budapest-Hungary.

Alfeyev is author of numerous musical compositions. His St Matthew Passion, grand oratorio for soloists, choir and orchestra, received a standing ovation at its performances at the Great Hall of Moscow Conservatory (27 March 2007), at the Auditorium Conciliazione, Rome (29 March 2007), and at St Patrick’s Cathedral, Melbourne (28 September 2007).[ Equally well received was his Christmas Oratorio, performed in Washington, Boston and New York (18–20 December 2007)[23] and later in Moscow (7 and 15 January 2008) and his Stabat Mater (world premiere in January 2012 under the direction of Vladimir Spivakov).
On the other hand, a Washington Post review described a 2011 performance of the Oratorio as “banal music that seemed the Russian equivalent of the cheesy carol arrangements by John Rutter”. Other critics, however, are more favorable to Alfeyev’s music, noting that “while they’re not on the level of Johann Sebastian Bach, the compositions are sophisticated, and they’re easy on the ear.” Some go even further by stating that “the music of composer Hilarion (Alfeyev) is bright, powerful and rigorous, but at the same time it is distinguished by the subtlest lyricism… His compositions penetrate a human soul; they are clear and accessible to everyone.”[26] It has also been repeatedly argued that Alfeyev is “one of the most widely performed of all living Russian composers”. His music has been performed at concerts more than 300 times in 15 years, in Russia and abroad.

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