“…we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
2 Corinthians 4:18
For our March return to Sanders Theatre we offer glimpses of eternity in two sublime works by the divine Mozart: the first of his two duos for violin and viola, in G major, K.423 and his Clarinet Quintet in A major, K.581 which encloses the second of his eight quintet slow movements specifying the use of mutes.
Two Impressionistic works featuring harp will also be heard. Joseph Jongen’s Two Trio Pieces for Flute, Cello and Harp, Op. 80 (1925) will receive its BCMS and Boston debut while Ravel’s Introduction and Allegro for Flute, Clarinet, Strings and Harp will be heard for only the second time in our series. Our first Ravel performance was in 2001.
Our March concert also offers the opportunity to hear the last of five works by British-born composers we promised, from Adés, Bliss, Bax and Elgar to Peter Child, who is a member of our community. His piece was written for the Dinosaur Annex Music Ensemble in 2013. It bears the title of a scientific film created in 1936 in the lab of legendary MIT engineer Harold “Doc” Edgerton to study the workings of industrial machinery in slow motion with the help of stroboscopic high-speed photography.
Peter describes the mood and temporal quality of the music “whose cheerful demeanor matches the whimsical tone of the film. This transitions into music of extreme slowness in the second half, where, at first, the listener is invited to contemplate the beauty of single notes. Toward the end of the film, the beating of a hummingbird’s wings is transformed from an invisible blur to an angel-like pulsation. Here, rapid figuration, trills, and tremolos in the music are transformed into sustained legato counterpoint, back and forth in antiphonal exchange between woodwinds and strings.”
“It is eternity now. I am in the midst of it. It is about me in the sunshine; I am in it, as the butterfly in the light-laden air. Nothing has to come; it is now. Now is eternity; now is the immortal life.”
Richard Jeffries, The Story of My Heart (1883)