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The Stabat Mater is Dvořák's most celebrated choral work. He began composing the piece in late 1875, but set it aside. Then, two tragedies befell him and he was plunged into an uncharacteristically melancholic mood. The deaths of his eleven-month-old daughter and three-year-old son compelled Dvořák to complete his masterpiece. Even though stricken with grief, Dvořák still could not resist writing simple, folk-like, melodies for his luminous Stabat Mater. On this performance, acclaimed conductor Mariss Jansons leads four superb soloists and the combined forces of the chorus and orchestra of the Bayerischen Rundfunk.