Without rain-- sometime in the next six weeks or so we are liable to have our annual snowfall but not today, certainly; the mid-40s. The machinae-- I really ought to look up 'application'-- are saying that there is a flood watch, tsk.
Am listening to Frank Martin's oratorio In terra pax, the Pater noster that is its penultimate section.
There has been some conversation about Martin at this post of Dr Townsend's at The Music Salon and I succumbed to curiosity about his Golgotha, which I've never listened to. But at least until after the Octave, I am sticking with seasonal music... and yet, fickle man, decided to give In terra pax a listen; it is from the 60s and as I understand it (quite superficially) it's a slighter piece than Golgotha (which twice as long, calling for soloists, mixed chorus, orchestra, and organ). Hmm, is my reaction-- I appreciated the work but would find it a challenge to explain why, beyond a general disposition in Martin's favor.
It is the sixth day infra Octavam Epiphaniae Domini and the Mass Ecce advenit dominator Dominus of Epiphany (Introibo) is sung, there being no feasts in the Calendar until that of Saint Hilary on the 14th, i.e. the day following the Octave (although I do see that after 1955 the Mass of the martyr Pope Saint Hyginus is said and his feast is commemorated in the Office-- but I try to ignore the post-1955 nonsense as much as possible).
Olivier Messiaen's Quatuor pour la fin du temps is being performed by the Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective at Wigmore Hall this morning at 1130.
Post Tertiam, and breakfast. Am going to take the plunge and listen to the first of the three Morton Feldman concerts Wigmore Hall staged last week on Saturday. We shall see. The ensemble is called Apartment House; the press comment 'pure and rootless musicality' doesn't incline me to enthusiasm. Well, the floor installers are back-- electric drills awhirring away-- on this greying Monday morning so am abandoning the Feldman solo piano pieces for the time being.
The National Catholic Register (while it is certainly 'the good NCR' in opposition to the 'bad NCR' i.e. the National Catholic Reporter) is not famous for its music criticism, and so one expected personalities rather than criticism from the article by K.V. Turley dated yesterday about Sir James MacMillan. Was not particularly impressed (e.g. "Sir MacMillan") but Mr Turley included one or two details I was unaware of-- had no idea that the MacMillans were for some years lay Dominicans. I'd never read about the Prophet Job as Saint Cecilia's predecessor as patron of musicians, either. From the interview.
I discovered that before St. Cecilia was the patron saint of music, the medieval music guilds throughout Europe regarded Job, from the Old Testament, as their patron: an intriguing and baffling connection; there are not many musical references in Job. However, the musicians of ancient times made woodcuts and paintings of musicians visiting Job to bring him solace in his misery, and they saw music as healing physical and spiritual wounds.
Post Vesperas. I was drowning out the drills and saws with The Sixteen singing Christmas carols until they went to lunch at 1300, at which point I remembered the Messiaen at Wigmore Hall, tsk.