Monday, October 24, 2005

Wagner?!


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

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5 Comments:

Blogger justplaincath said...

So what is wrong with wearing standard clerical black?

I'm ignorant; not critical.

24/10/05 10:51  
Blogger Flambeaux said...

Check out the last name of the AP pool photog. It doesn't get much better...

24/10/05 12:21  
Blogger Perry Lorenzo said...

I was particularly touched by the Pope's remarks after this concert--especially about the connection between great music, God, and relations between peoples on earth. It is a remarkable vision--not remarkable because the insight is difficult or rare, but remarkable because it takes great courage to see Truth and Goodness in Art's Beauty nowadays! Hurrah for the German Shepherd!

24/10/05 14:21  
Blogger Pilgrim said...

As I recall, Yehudi Menuhin conducted Wagner in Israel some years ago. So, all is forgiven (musically, at least).

24/10/05 21:35  
Blogger RCEsq said...

I think it was Daniel Barenboim and he got no end of flak. But the Vatican isn't Israel, and if Jewish sensibilities are a concern, I'm sure that any number of composers of church music in earlier centuries had views on the Jews (and other minorities -- see Monastatos, Mozart's caricature of blacks in the Magic Flute) that aren't exactly kosher by today's standards.

25/10/05 02:07  

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