Friday, May 19, 2023

Coming This Sunday: Bach's B Minor Mass

I am literally pinching myself. I just found out today that Bach's B Minor Mass is being performed this Sunday in Durham, NC -- only an hour drive from the farm. I cannot wait! 

Can you believe that a country yokel like me has such culture so close to him? Someone has praised this mass as "the greatest work of music in all ages and of all people." Best of all, it's all in Latin, a language I absolutely adore. Movements and sub-movements include:

  • Kyrie Eleison
  • Et in Terra Pax
  • Laudamus Te
  • Gratias Agimus Tibi
  • Domine Deus
  • Cum Sancto Spiritu
  • Credo in Unum Deum
  • Crucifixus 
  • Et Resurrexit
  • Osanna in Excelsis
  • Benedictus
  • Angus Dei
  • Dona Nobis Pacem 

When I was studying music at the University of Hawaii, our choir sang that last piece, "Give us peace." I will never forget it. 

An aging Bach left this piece as a bequest to his successors and to future generations of people, including this farmer from Virginia. It seems to encapsulate in every detail Bach's famous dictum that "the final aim and reason of all music is nothing other than the glorification of God and the refreshment of the human spirit." I'm still in love with his creations. No matter how cool your computer speakers might sound, they can never compare to the rumble in your chest when you hear this music performed live. Bach's music is beyond amazing. It's crazy to think that most people have never heard this piece.