The music of heaven



Paul Tortelier playing the the Prelude from J.S. Bach's first cello suite. This is the one of two pieces of music that I want played at my funeral and, in want of a professional cellist, the recording should be by Tortelier for his musicianship and his humanity.

He was a true believer in the potentiality of music to unite beyond difference and of beauty to save the world if attended to aright. I remember the vivid engagement of the master classes he gave in Oxford and of a memorable evening in London at a performance of Walton's cello concerto when he dedicated it to peace and gave a wonderful impromptu plea for reconciliation of all to all from the stage in heavily accented, heartfelt French.

Splendidly he relates in his autobiography seeing a beautiful town in (I think) Belgium disfigured by garish adverts for Coca Cola and being moved, him and his students, to a night time of guerilla poster stripping!

The Bach suites are extraordinary pieces - a serenity binds each one as it explores every facet of potential mood, moving back and forth from a still centre. They recognise every facet of our humanity and witness to a core of yet something other - a divine image dancing in each and every particularity of our step.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Coleridge and his Ancient Mariner as our companions

Exploring the roots of and the routes to empathy

A remembered Quaker dwarf fights slavery and provokes justice.