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July 11, 2013

Sacred Music

Over at Grim's place, Texan99 has been posting lots of music links. She describes one as, "Perhaps the most beautiful music ever composed, especially the instrumental interlude and conclusion."

This aria, which I listen to first thing every Christmas morning, must surely rival Tex's lovely choice. The recording doesn't have quite the lyrical quality of the one I own, but it's good enough to convey something of the magical feeling I get every time I hear it:

This is one of many exquisite choral works by Giovanni da Palestrina (who I had never heard of until my youngest son made me several CDs when he was in college):

Posted by Cassandra at July 11, 2013 12:12 PM

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I like the YouTube posts that show the scores with the music. I wanted to post one like that with "Beim Schlafengehen," but the only one had an introductory ad, which is too obnoxious to post.

Posted by: Texan99 at July 12, 2013 09:59 AM

Sublime. Thank you for this wonderful interlude.

Posted by: Cricket at July 14, 2013 01:02 AM

Did he compose the chorus the nuns sang in "The Sound of Music?" It is truly exquisite.

Posted by: Cricket at July 14, 2013 01:06 AM

Sigh. Rodgers composed it. To be able to write something that nice...

Dream on.

Posted by: Me at July 14, 2013 01:16 AM

Did he compose the chorus the nuns sang in "The Sound of Music?" It is truly exquisite.

I don't know, Cricket, but I agree - it was lovely.

I watched the Sound of Music twice right before my husband got back from Afghanistan. Hadn't seen it in ages, and was blown away by just how good a movie it is.

Posted by: Cass at July 14, 2013 12:27 PM

I do not know what your religious practices are. But if you are a Christian and you have never heard of - or heard - Palestrina, you are going to the wrong church. In a few weeks I'll be singing Sicut cervus desiderat as part of a quartet in my parish (I'm a tenor) (not as good as that guy, though), and I'm looking forward to it.

Posted by: RonF at July 15, 2013 01:41 PM

I'm an Episcopalian, but most of the churches we've belonged to were so small that they didn't have the kind of choir that would take on something this ambitious :)

The last time we belonged to a church with a serious choir was in DC. Wish I could hear your performance!

Posted by: Cass at July 15, 2013 01:55 PM

Well my goodness, Cass, I'm an Episcopalian too. We have an entire 6 people in our choir and we sing stuff like this. But then we have a choirmaster/pianist/organist who is far and away more than we deserve or should expect.

He's got a Master's in Piano Performance, is an Adjunct Professor at a well-known university in the Chicago area, teaches at a high school, is music director for various off-Loop theaters (with a local Tony nomination last year), teaches private voice students (my wife and daughter buy me lessons with him every year) for professional singers (which does NOT include me), and is music director for a very active vocal ensemble that does a classical concert one month and then does a cabaret in a gay bar the next. We pay his health insurance, but he could make 2x or 3x what we pay him elsewhere. But his Dad is an Episcopal priest and we hired him when he was still in college and he sees us as his mission. Lucky us!

If we record it and if it sounds half decent I'll try to find a way to upload it.

Posted by: RonF at July 16, 2013 10:15 AM