Six months and he's really looking the part, no?
So there were two concerts in Papa Bear's honor over the weekend. In the words of one attendee, it was "just delightful."
Yet there were some murmurs of discontent. The Thursday concert of the Munich Philharmonic, Germanic in its emphases, went over the top in the eyes of a few by bringing Wagner back to the Vatican -- the overture from Tannhauser was the grand finale of the evening. As one Roman said, "Six months ago, it would have been unthinkable to perform a piece by Wagner in the Vatican," a seeming reference to John Paul II's extraordinary sensitivities to the Jewish community.
Present for both shows was Brother Georg, a piece of whose was played on Thursday night and who took a special pride of place on Saturday evening at the concert by the Regensburg Cathedral Choir -- which he headed for thirty years -- in the Sistine Chapel. At both events, the Papstbruder was conspicuous by wearing a simple black suit and pants, which are supposedly verboten in the papal presence.
PHOTO 1: Reuters/Tony Gentile
PHOTO 2: POOL/L'Osservatore