CUUC

CUUC

2018-01-02

Music: Sun Jan 7


Spiritual resilience is embodied in a variety of ways in this Sunday’s musical selections at CUUC. Following an incomparable career as a barn-storming virtuoso pianist showman, Franz Liszt focused increasingly on spirituality as he matured, eventually taking minor orders in the Roman Catholic Church. The second of his “Two Legends” for solo piano relates the tale of St Francis of Paola who crossed the Strait of Messina to Sicily treading upon the waters, when he and his traveling companions were refused passage in a commercial vessel. Liszt described the story in a letter to Richard Wagner thus: "On his outspread cloak he strides firmly, steadfastly, over the tumultuous waves - his left hand holding burning coals, his right hand giving the sign of blessing, His gaze is directed upwards, where the word Charitas surrounded by an aureole lights his way.”

J. S. Bach’s boundless Lutheran faith is on display in an introspective chorale-prelude arranged for piano by Ferruccio Busoni, and the poignant African-American Spiritual “Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child” is performed as a set of variations for piano by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor. Finally, the morning’s Offertory speaks not to any overtly religious theme, but provides testimony of Ludwig van Beethoven’s imperturbable resilience in the face of the cruelest of disabilities. His Bagatelle in b minor is among his last works for solo piano—music written from a state of near-total deafness.

Read on for programming details.

Visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_GcDsqkOcjI for a live performance of Liszt’s Legende No. 2 by Alfred Brendel.

Centering Music: Adam Kent, piano
Deux Légendes
            II. St. Francis of Paola Walking on the Waves
                                                            Franz Liszt

Opening Music:
“I Call On Thee, Lord”
                                    J. S. Bach, arr. by Ferruccio Busoni

Offertory:
Bagatelle in B Minor, Op. 126, No. 4
                                                Ludwig van Beethoven

Interlude:
Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child
                        Traditional African-American, arr. by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor


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