A moment of music, not silence, for Ken Winters
The funeral for Ken Winters is at Trinity College Chapel today at 2 p.m. There is a clear purity to the space, thanks to plain walls and mostly clear glass in the windows, that is far more Lutheran than Anglican in spirit. Members of the Tafelmusik Chamber Choir and organist John Tuttle will make sure there is plenty of J.S. Bach to be heard.
I really want to be there, to help celebrate the life of a great appreciator and missionary of fine musicmaking, but I can't. So I'm leaving two secular and one sacred musical offerings:
Schubert's An die Musik, sung by Janet Baker (accompanied by a young Murray Perahia).
Franz Schober's poem translates as:
Oh lovely Art, in how many grey hours,
When life's fierce orbit ensnared me,
Have you kindled my heart to warm love,
Carried me away into a better world!
How often has a sigh escaping from your harp,
A sweet, sacred chord of yours
Opened up for me the heaven of better times,
Oh lovely Art, for that I thank you!
... and Ralph Vaughan Williams' luminous setting of Dante Gabriel Rosetti's poem "Silent Noon," sung here by Anthony Rolfe Johnson (David Willison is at the piano):
Your hands lie open in the long fresh grass, --
The finger-points look through like rosy blooms:
Your eyes smile peace. The pasture gleams and glooms
'Neath billowing skies that scatter and amass.
All round our nest, far as the eye can pass,
Are golden kingcup-fields with silver edge
Where the cow-parsley skirts the hawthorn-hedge.
'Tis visible silence, still as the hour-glass.
Deep in the sun-searched growths the dragon-fly
Hangs like a blue thread loosened from the sky: --
So this wing'd hour is dropt to us from above.
Oh! clasp we to our hearts, for deathless dower,
This close-companioned inarticulate hour
When twofold silence was the song of love.
And an uncredited performance of a setting by Nadia Boulanger of "Lux Aeterna" text from the Requiem Mass: