Tuesday, March 25, 2003

Here Comes Peter Cottontail

I'll be part of a paid choir for Good Friday and Easter Sunday. Kind of a funny concept, given how many bands have paid me NOT to sing over the years...

Anyhow, my organ prof's church - I don't have all the details yet - he'll have us sightreading what's not listed here. But check out what we covered at rehearsal last night:

Kyrie: Missa Aeterna Mundi (Palestrina)
Gloria: Missa Aeterna Mundi (Palestrina)
Sequence: Victimae Paschalae Laudes (Latin plainchant)
Credo: Taize
Prep: Laudate Dominum (Goemane)
Communion: Ave Maria (Biebl)
Communion II: Alleluia (Thomson)

I mentioned after rehearsal that I was surprised we were singing a Kyrie (not sure of the rubrics on this, but thought we were to skip both Confiteor and Kyrie on Easter). At first he said he thought we were supposed to do it, then decided it didn't matter what we were supposed to do - he'd heard plenty of abuses in the name of modernity, and the Kyrie was too beautiful to leave out. Something like that.

The assembly will be included on the entrance and recessional hymns, psalm (probably Gelineau), and mass parts (probably Proulx's Community Mass) - the Taize Credo has an assembly part too, but it's Latin, not sure they'll pick it up. We're singing some kind of alleluia for sprinkling, too - Hughes, maybe? Also not sure about the gospel acc. - he usually just does the plainchant.

These are gorgeous pieces (the Goemane is maybe more about cleverness than beauty), and I think his assembly is pretty well acclimated to his non-particpatory approach to communion - he usually plays an organ solo.

I still feel funny about this, but my choices are either to show up or not, and I've committed already. Should be interesting.

Friday, March 21, 2003

Happy birthday, Johann

I, like, totally forgive you for writing all these orgelpieces that kick my *ss...

Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Here's Someone Else ...

...who says it better than I do:


All right, let me see if I understand the logic of this correctly. We are going to ignore the United Nations in order to make clear to Saddam Hussein that the United Nations cannot be ignored. We're going to wage war to preserve the UN's ability to avert war. The paramount principle is that the UN's word must be taken seriously, and if we have to subvert its word to guarantee that it is, then by gum, we will. Peace is too important not to take up arms to defend. Am I getting this right?

Further, if the only way to bring democracy to Iraq is to vitiate the democracy of the Security Council, then we are honor-bound to do that too, because democracy, as we define it, is too important to be stopped by a little thing like democracy as they define it. Also, in dealing with a man who brooks no dissension at home, we cannot afford dissension among ourselves. We must speak with one voice against Saddam Hussein's failure to allow opposing voices to be heard. We are sending our gathered might to the Persian Gulf to make the point that might does not make right, as Saddam Hussein seems to think it does. And we are twisting the arms of the opposition until it agrees to let us oust a regime that twists the arms of the opposition. We cannot leave in power a dictator who ignores his own people. And if our people, and people elsewhere in the world, fail to understand that, then we have no choice but to ignore them.

Listen. Don't misunderstand. I think it is a good thing that the members of the Bush administration seem to have been reading Lewis Carroll. I only wish someone had pointed out that "Alice in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass" are meditations on paradox and puzzle and illogic and on the strangeness of things, not templates for foreign policy. It is amusing for the Mad Hatter to say something like, `We must make war on him because he is a threat to peace,' but not amusing for someone who actually commands an army to say that.

As a collector of laughable arguments, I'd be enjoying all this were it not for the fact that I know--we all know--that lives are going to be lost in what amounts to a freak, circular reasoning accident.

Peter Freundlich is a freelance journalist in New York.

Copyright ©2003 National Public Radio®. All rights reserved. No quotes from the materials contained herein may be used in any media without attribution to National Public Radio.

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Off to War

I've started this post a couple of dozen times, and stopped because I was too angry. Maybe I'll get through it this time.

Nah. I didn't.

Read Amy instead. A few weeks old, but most of the salient points are there.

I'd been seriously hoping that the US and UN were doing a good cop / bad cop job on Saddam. I guess I was wrong.

Lord, have mercy on your warlike children...

Friday, March 07, 2003

A Lenten Offering

Here's a piece I wrote a couple of years ago, titled "King O'er the Hills". It has DERRY for its melody. We used it, a capella, for veneration of the cross on Good Friday for the past two years.

This version is hardly liturgical, but you may find it interesting...

I shared it in a few online communities over the past week : A bit of a controversy at Home Recording about whether it was any good or not, my classical composers group post got one pretty nice response, and my NPM group stifled a large collective yawn.

Anyhow, not for the timid - I dubbed it a "cinematic" setting. Let me know what you think. The Home Rec guys have given me some good ideas about reworking it - I'll definitely bring the vocals up.

"Happy" Lent, every one.