Monday, June 22, 2009

Prima nochte

So many friends, old and new. What a pleasure to meet Jeff Ostrowski and his Corpus Christi crew of youngin's. I don't care what he tells you, he's going to get carded every time until he's 65, if he ever imbibes a fermented beverage! His portrait must be adjacent to "energy" in the dictionary; and such a nice sibling he brought his little sis with the crew just because she loves to sing. And that, meinen Freunden, ist dass Punkt!
And then there was meeting "G"/Scelata after a year of wondering who the heck this brilliant woman is who doesn't take squat from anyone and posts like she's Samuel L. Jackson proclaiming "And dat's the truth, Ruth!" Kathy (Hymnography Unbound), whom I briefly got to know at SD Intensive is so charmingly coy. MJB was all business helping AOZ with all things registrative.
So, after a primer of introductions which would serve as perfect models of what I'd want to hear from my parish ambo weekly, the plenum sang a couple of motets under Professor Mahrt and Dr. Buchholz, and then we diaspora'd to five distinct polyphonic choirs. We set up shop with Maestro Brouwers and the Joan Brudieu Requiem. We went up to the 7th floor of Mundelein Hall overlooking the lake and after some brief biographical remarks (I think this fellow Brudieu was some sort of proto-Basque version of Poland's Gomolka) we started the Kyrie. Wendy appreciated how his corrective remarks were so tactile and accessible. What I liked was his adherence to the maxim "If you want them to listen actively, don't sing so darn loud!" It's going to surely evince a strong witness to the faith we share through this director's insights and demands. And that word, demand, is why I so believe in what CMAA is doing, why I wanted the love of my life to viscerally experience the spectrum of Catholic sacred music culture that has been sequestered. Liturgy is the work of the people, except that we have devalued the very notion of what "work" constitutes; it is supposed to hurt, it is supposed to be difficult and almost unatainable, it is supposed to such difficult exercize that ought to compel the worshipper to want to prove worthy of being in the presence of the Divine. Brouwer, et al here, get that in spades.
Compline was Wendy's first venture into the Office; she "did" so well, but she felt that she didn't even get her toes wet. I can't wait for the moment when she gets that it is simply about being in that moment totally committed, whether or not she nuances every neume and word perfectly or not. I think she is among those of whom Jeffrey spoke about in his NLM post earlier today. It is a beauty to behold.
Speaking of beauties to behold:

And as it's 12:21 CST as I conclude, I might say that Simpson 4th floor was well represented in the common room by 3 Californians, 1 young buck CA/Oregon DM who took Amtrak (that shows moxie), a great young priest from SC, and our surprise guest, a DM from Canberra, Australia (lucky I had some Yellowtail Shiraz on hand!)
We tried, and I mean we as in MA Singing Mum and the old man here, to coax Prof. Mahrt to have a sip of some fine Cab not from Pomeroy's Wine Bar, but he needed to settle in. So, we kept the fires burning until a lovely man next to the common room reminded us of the witching hour, which we immediately respected.
Wendy's nodded off, I'm going to lay the corpulence down in a minute. But this so bodes well for the resurgence of our Roman Rites here in the US, and maybe the "West." I can't speak to how convicted I felt next to my wife as we sang Compline together; it was so........CATHOLIC.

2 comments:

Scelata said...

Sir, you are too kind.

Or too cruel.

And have you been spying on my choir rehearsals, when excessive sibilance from my choristers has inflamed me to the point where I bellow (toward the camera, in wild-eyed close-up,)“I am SICK of these mother cuddlin' snakes in this mother cuddlin' loft!”?

In any case, I used to look more like Samuel L until they regulated my thyroid medicine.

(Save the Liturgy, Save the World)

Charles said...

I have tried most of my life to truly be "kind."
But like the transluscent skin of the alien creature in "SIGNS" I think most folks see "cruel" more easily coming from ever amounts to their visage of me.
But just pour water on me and I melt in a puddle of tears.