Louth takes Pärt to its heart

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - Listings - MICHAEL DER­VAN

IOANA PETCU-COLAN (VI­O­LIN), MICHAEL McHALE (PI­ANO), STATE CHOIR LATVIJA/MARIS SIRMAIS FER­GUS SHEIL St Peter’s Church of Ire­land, Drogheda Wed 8pm 125 0818-205205; St Pa­trick’s Cathe­dral, Dun­dalk, Co Louth Thurs 8pm 125 0818-205205 This week and next there will be an ex­tra­or­di­nary fo­cus on the mu­sic of Es­to­nia’s best-known com­poser, Arvo Pärt (above), whose of­ten plain­tive mu­si­cal calm­ness has made him a cult fig­ure with a reach far be­yond the nor­mal con­fines of con­tem­po­rary mu­sic.

Ea­monn Quinn’s Louth Con­tem­po­rary Mu­sic So­ci­ety has com­mis­sioned a short new choral piece from Pärt, The Deer’s Cry, which will be pre­mièred by the State Choir Latvija at St Peter’s Church in Drogheda on Wed­nes­day, with a re­peat at St Pa­trick’s Cathe­dral, Dun­dalk on Thurs­day. Both pro­grammes also of­fer cross-sec­tions of Pärt’s choral and in­stru­men­tal mu­sic, but dif­fer in de­tail in the works they of­fer. There are premières of new works by Ge­org Pele­cis ( I See His Blood Upon the Rose), and Deirdre McKay ( Comendo spir­i­tum meum ) in Drogheda, and by Ri­hards Dubra ( Hail, Queen of Heaven) in Dun­dalk.

Wed­nes­day’s Drogheda con­cert is al­ready sold out. But there are some tick­ets left for Thurs­day’s, in Dun­dalk, and there is still time to book for the RTÉ Liv­ing Mu­sic Fes­ti­val, pro­grammed this year by James MacMil­lan, which of­fers a three-day sur­vey of Pärt’s mu­sic from Fri­day Fe­bru­ary 15th to Sun­day 17th.

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