November 21, 2010

Weekends Of Music

There is music that feeds the mind- and music that feeds the soul. These last two weekends have been full of both.

Our family has long been attenders of the concerts at Chapel of Our Lady Restoration - an old church in the Greek Revival style now used for special events. It sits across from the train station in Cold Spring- one quaint building among many, perched on top of a hill overlooking the Hudson River.

To reach it you climb stone steps, great slabs of rock worn into the hill. At the top you have a view of the river- expanding beneath you- reaching out to the north and the south- and in the distance the other side, rising mountains. Down-river is West Point, with its mighty walls and steeples. On the other side of the church is a path leading down to the water-line, where years ago cadets who had journeyed across the river would dock their boats to come to service.

The building's acoustics are sublime and the performances were magnificent. This time we were seeing The Claremont Trio- Donna Kwong (piano), Emily Bruskin (violin), and Julia Bruskin (cello)- the latter two were twins and we had seen Julia in spring play with her husband (on piano). 

The music began- fierce, passionate, racing, mournful... I cried twice within the first movement- Modéré, Trio (1914) by Marice Ravel. I did not cry again during the performance- I lost myself in the reverie- (though once, I confess, I did imagine murder on the balcony- such is the power of music).

The concert was long- silence reigned till applause roared. We filed out into the cold night-  our senses acute to the beauty around us, darkness over the mighty river while warm, fire-like lights twinkling at us from distant West Point.

Then yesterday our own church gave a concert- MaryAnn McCormick blessed us with her magnificent mezzo-soprano voice singing sacred music. I can't say I'm the biggest fan of opera (nor, for that matter, of classical) but when anything, be it food or dance or art, is of such high quality I believe there is something inherently beautiful within it which no one can possibly be immune to.

Who could fail to be moved- by such glory given to God in such resounding, powerful, triumphant tones? Nor by such words as were penned under the inspiration of the Spirit- for you, for me- thus lifted up? We left incredibly edified.

Below is one song which spoke to me particularly. 

O rest in the Lord
wait patiently for Him
and He shall give thee thy heart's desires
Commit thy way unto Him,- and trust in Him;
and fret not thyself- because of evil  doers.
O rest in the Lord
wait patiently for Him
and He shall give thee thy heart's desires...

(Psalm 37: 1, 4,7)

Trust is something I have been learning yet again recently. For I know desires well. And I know what it is to be consumed by them- and by worry, too, as I wonder how and when.
How blessed it is that God knows them, too- and He says: trust, wait, rest in me- for I will withhold no good thing. (Psalm 84:11)

1 comment:

  1. I beg to differ that no one is immune to great beauty; students of our local college were texting and sleeping throughout a performance by a solo violinist straight from Carnegie Hall, playing jaw-dropping music on a genuine Stradivarius. There is no limit to human idiocy it would seem. :)