I have a certain love for Evensong

ChoirEvensongs are evening prayer services, so called in a reference to the latin ‘Vespers‘, which means ‘evening’. They are offered as part of the liturgy of the canonical hours by many churches including Catholic, Anglican and Lutheran.

While most of those churches will refer to their evening prayers as ‘Vespers’, the Anglican tradition refers to them as ‘Evensong’. The Anglican Evensong includes psalms and canticles, conducted following a set form with a choral delivery of the service.

If you are in the UK – living or perhaps visiting – you will find an evensong near you in this great website: www.choralevensong.org. You can browse by location or even post code and they will help you find options nearby. They will also help you learn more about evensongs, for example, understanding the various musical items you will find in a Choral Evensong service. Continue reading “I have a certain love for Evensong”

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Music calling for action

In the words of the Venezuelan conductor Gustavo Dudamel, ‘with an instrument you own the world’. He is one of the many believers in music’s power to unite and inspire people regardless of any possible barrier they may face.

Music can help us tell compelling stories, engage armies, share complex ideas and feelings, motivate action, promote meaningful conversation. Music can reach and touch people far beyond the limits of spoken words – in fact, music is this universal language by which human links are made without the need to share any common language.

The use of music to help convey messages is not new, but it is always delightful to find out about new uses. Continue reading “Music calling for action”

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Discovering Sound at Belgais

icon for silenceClaudio Abbado, our forever conductor of the Berliner Philharmoniker, referred to the importance of listening and of silence in music. Daniel Barenboim, one of the finest pianists and conductors of our time, also celebrates silence in music:

There are many types of silence. There is a silence before the note, there is a silence at the end and there is a silence in the middle.
— Daniel Barenboim

The celebrated tireless Portuguese pianist, Maria João Pires, once more shares thoughts and feelings about sound and silence. And goes beyond: teaches and shares her personal discoveries of a lifetime, after having dedicated her entire life to the piano. Continue reading “Discovering Sound at Belgais”

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Märchenbuilder

icon for pianoI have been thinking of moving out of Sao Paulo, but then there comes the Piano Recital Series coordinated by the Brazilian Sculpture Museum (“Museu Brasileiro da Escultura”) and surprises me once more. Beautiful initiative, always coming up with an interesting musician and a great repertoire to be tasted. This time a very well known composer – of those we sometimes think that we have already appreciated every piece. And there comes Robert Schumann and his Märchenbilder, Opus 113 (March, 1851). Continue reading “Märchenbuilder”

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Chopin 205!

drawing of ChopinNesta data 22 de fevereiro, no ano de 1810 – embora na incerteza da época há quem defenda que foi em 01 de março do mesmo ano – nascia nos arredores de Warsaw, na Polônia, o pianista e compositor Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin, que o mundo conhece por seu nome francês, Frédéric François Chopin. Um dos símbolos máximos do período da música conhecido por Romantismo, talentoso e extremamente reservado, em 18 anos de sua carreira na França, deu cerca de 30 concertos apenas em grandes salas – tímido, preferia o acolhedor ambiente do ambiente de câmara dos salões privados. Permanece um ídolo em sua pátria natal, de onde se mudou aos 21 anos por apoiar o ideal revolucionário contra a política da época, e dá nome ao aeroporto mais importante da Polônia até hoje. Continue reading “Chopin 205!”

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