Archive for the ‘Sacred music’ Category

Sacred music for Easter by Bach, Handel and Haydn at King’s College Cambridge

March 11, 2009
You don’t have to be a believer to appreciate the great Christian cultural legacy – soaring Gothic cathedrals, the cadences of the English language of the King James Bible, and a canon of sacred music that could keep you enthralled for a lifetime.

Easter’s the high point of the Christian calendar, which usually means some great sacred music gigs.

This year’s Easter offering by King’s College Cambridge is mouth-watering. The highlights are Handel’s Messiah, Bach’s St John Passion and a celebration of Haydn.

I’m going to the Bach gig on Wed 8 April. King’s is one of the great iconic music venues of the English-speaking world; it’s my first visit, so I’m counting the days.

www.kings.cam.ac.uk/chapel/foundation

Gerry Smith

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FREE! Music for grown-ups on air in the next seven days

March 25, 2008

Over the next seven days, I hope to catch/record these tempting TV/radio broadcasts: 

Wed/Th – nothing 

Fri 28 March

2000 Sacred Music (2/4) – BBC Four

2230 Dizzy Gillespie, Jazz Library – BBC Radio 3 

Sat 29 March

2000 Buddy Holly, Icons Revisited (1/10), BBC Radio 2 

Mon 31 March

2045 Manuel de Falla, Composer Of The Week – BBC Radio 3 (1/5, continues Tues-Fri)

2230 Karita Mattila (Finnish soprano), Artist Focus – BBC Radio 3

(1/4, continues Tues-Thurs)

2300 Maths And Music – BBC Radio 3, (1/4, continues Tues-Thurs)

FREE! Music for grown-ups on air in the next seven days

March 19, 2008

Over the next seven days, I hope to catch/record these tempting TV/radio broadcasts: 

Wed 19 March:  2045 Schoenberg, Composer Of The Week (3/5) – BBC Radio 3

(Plus programme 4 on Thurs, 5 on Fri) 

Good Friday 21 March: 1830 Bach’s St John Passion – BBC Radio 3

2000 Sacred Music (1/4) – BBC Four (repeated Sat 1900)

2230 Anita O’Day, Jazz Library – BBC Radio 3 

Sun 23 March:2030 Sacred Music – live concert – BBC Four 

Monday 24 March:2230 Bob Dylan’s Theme Time Radio Hour (Instruments) – BBC Radio 2   

Gerry Smith

Sacred music – BBC Four’s promising new series

March 17, 2008

BBC Four, the TV channel for grown-ups, continues its exciting programming of high quality music with a promising new four-part series on sacred music, starting on Good Friday. 

Sounds like Musical Heaven to me … not to be missed …

This is what they’re saying about it:

“Taking the viewer on a pilgrimage spanning six centuries … performed by the award-winning choir ‘The Sixteen’ conducted by Harry Christophers …

“In the opening programme ‘The Gothic Revolution’ begins at St Paul’s Cathedral … travels to Paris to discover how, at the close of the twelfth century, plainsong (chant) became polyphony (music of ‘many voices’) – the birth of harmony in the west.

“The next stop in the series is Italy. In ‘Palestrina and the Popes’ …  links between the papal intrigues of Renaissance Rome and the music of the enigmatic Palestrina, ‘The Prince of Music’. Palestrina’s work is considered by many to be unsurpassed in its spiritual perfection, but running underneath it is the turbulent story of the counter-reformation, which would have a dramatic impact on the composer’s life and music …

“ episode three ‘Tallis, Byrd and the Tudors’ … the effect of Henry VIII’s break with the Pope and the subsequent tumultuous history of the founding of the Protestant Church in England through the careers of two professional church musicians who were also superlative choral composers …

“ … Germany where Luther’s Protestant Reformation led to a musical revolution and ultimately to the glorious works of Johann Sebastian Bach …

“A 90-minute celebratory concert accompanies the documentaries with music from the series for Easter Sunday performed by Harry Christophers and ‘The Sixteen’, specially recorded at LSO St Luke’s in London.”

Gerry Smith