18. 'Defiant Requiem'
A single act of protest that makes the entirety of punk rock seem like child's play. Defiant Requiem is the story of conductor Rafael Schächter and an amateur chorus of Czechs rehearsing a rebellion the basement of a Terazin concentration camp. They learned the Latin text of Guiseppe Verdi's Requiem – with its themes of vengeance and justice – as a protest to the Nazis, a cry of help to the Red Cross and a therapeutic release for themselves. Only one photo exists, so interviews with survivors paint a picture of crowded barracks, extreme hunger and the power of music. "I'm not so sure whether I was hard of hearing but I think that my stomach stopped growling when I was singing," says one. "I think when you are more a soul than a person, I don't think the soul has to be nourished by anything but by heavenly music."