Generous Orthodoxy  

Friday, September 02, 2011

Bach, the great comforter for 9/11

A remarkably appealing article in today's Arts section of the NYTimes describes the program at Trinity Church, Wall Street, during the 10th anniversary commemorations. Lots of Bach is planned, and it is rather wonderful to read the composer described as "the great comforter." That is certainly true for me, and I knew a man who was dying who went every week to Emmanuel Church in Boston where the cantatas are regularly performed, but I didn't think the secular Times would describe Bach that way.

For what it's worth, it is the cantatas, Passions, and motets--not so much the instrumental music--that I find supremely comforting. Unfortunately, it is not so easy to hear the cantatas performed live, even in NYC (one of several reasons that I support Bach Vespers at Holy Trinity Lutheran). Trinity is presenting a program of cantatas at noon, Monday through Thursday, Sept 5-9.

The article is interesting--it describes the role that Trinity and St Paul's played on that fateful day and it explains why the church authorities removed the pews that the firefighters and other relief workers used, an action that I and others found rather distressing. Here is the link to the article: