Sunday, 20 June 2010
Alpha & Omega - The Event
The central panel is inspired by the Revelation of St John the Divine and represents God's desire to call humankind into a relationship with him. The panel on its left depicts stories from the Old Testament with figures that include Job and Jonah. The panel on the right is inspired by passages from the New Testament. I don't think there are many Baptist churches with such a visual display, and I felt proud to be associated with the church!
In the first half of the evening I spoke about music and the arts from a Christian perspective. I explored the power of music, and that strong sense when music becomes a means of encounter with God. I went on to set out a structure for thinking Christianly about the arts. It went well and I certainly enjoyed myself, but wonder whether I tried to cram in too much so that it was a bit dense to listen to. I think that I tried to do two talks in the space of one.
After wine and cheese - though not for Mary Cotes, my superb accompanist, and me! - we gave a forty-five minute recital. The piano was a lovely baby grand, the acoustic was great, and we played well. And overall I think it was probably the best that I've played since music was my main occupation in life.
The audience were treated to a Tarantella by the totally unknown composer, Milde; two movements of the Mozart Concerto; a lyrical piece by Faure; a serenely beautiful slow movement from a Vivaldi Concerto; Sarah Watt's fantastic, Everything is Somewhere Else; and for the first time, A Simple Song, from Leonard Bernstein's Mass. Both Mary and I can't get this out of our heads and we love it! So if you have Spotify, go listen! What went down very well, although it wasn't the musical highlight, was me singing 'The Bassoon Song', with interjections played on the Bassoon. It's Victorian Music Hall stuff - not great music but a lot of fun.
The half an hour a day practice - there was a time when I'd spend that warming up! - will now reduce to ten minutes a day until the beginning of July when the next concert comes into view.