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"I hate classical music, especially when it's played!" - Jimmy Durante

posted Nov 13, 2010, 7:06 AM by Steven Vaughan

He was kidding, wasn’t he?

 

Through the thoughtfulness and generosity of several people, we learned our friends at Good Shepherd School were offering the donation of a grand piano.  And to “baptize” it into our parish, I’m playing Claude Debussy’s La cathédrale engloutie (The Sunken Cathedral.)  This prelude is based on an ancient myth about a submerged underwater cathedral that rises up from the sea on clear mornings through the transparent water.  Listen to the mimicked sounds of priests chanting, bells chiming, and the organ playing.  These are still heard as it sinks back into the ocean, but from underwater.

 

And a grand piano isn’t the only blessing we have received.  Parishioners have also generously donated numerous percussion instruments for our kid’s ensemble HeartBEAT; music folders for our choir; the 400 Last Verses I’ve been hoping for; piano tunings; and most of all, their time and participation.  And Fr. Robert is graciously making the necessary arrangements to accommodate all these gifts.

 

If you want to hear me perform more classical music, I’m singing Mozart’s Requiem this Friday night, November 19 in Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall with the National Chorale.  There’s a saying that a tree bears its finest fruit just before its death, and many consider this Mass for the Dead, composed at the end of his life, his greatest masterpiece.

 

This concert is paired with Handel’s oratorio, Alexander’s Feast.  The nature of this piece is perhaps best summed up by its other title, The Power of Music.  It is a celebratory ode composed for St. Cecilia’s Day, the patron saint of musicians, coming up on November 22. 

 

For more information, or to order tickets, call (212) 333-5333 or visit www.NationalChorale.org. 

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