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St Wenceslas Sacred Music Festival
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Event:
St Wenceslas Sacred Music Festival
Type:
Festival
When:
From: Saturday, September 1 2007, 2:30 pm
to: Sunday, September 30 2007, 5:00 pm
Where:
Description:
An annual festival devoted to sacred music performed in some of Prague's numerous and amazing churches, coincides with the festivities of St Wenceslas, the Czechs' patron saint, whose feast day falls on 28 September. Sacred works of the Christian tradition are programmed alongside Orthodox Christian and Jewish music, performed in a variety of churches and venues around Prague. The programme also every year features works by both Czech composers and those composers who have notable anniversaries. For example in 2001 Antonín Dvorák was programmed alongside Giuseppe Verdi, in the centenary year of his death, while Arnold Schoenberg, who died 50 years earlier, was programmed alongside composers with a long-standing Czech connection (if not Bohemian nationals) such as Viktor Ullmann and Alexander Zemlinsky. That concert, in the Jubilee Synagogue, investigated the spiritual echo in Jewish music. Visitors from Britain - the Chapel Royal, conducted by Alistair Dixon - performed works by Thomas Tallis and William Byrd and there were a number of concerts devoted to modern premires of works written to honour Saint Wenceslas, including Pavel Josef Vejvanovsk?½'s (1640-1693) Vesperae Sancti Wenceslai and two Italian works: the oratorio Abel of Bohemia or St Wenceslas by Antonio Draghi (1635-1700) and the Festive Vespers by Giovanni Legrenzi (1626-1690). Each year there are also exhibitions and lectures on the music. The Sacred Music Festival is a great opportunity to discover some of Prague's lesser-known churches (there are 630 of them). Fortunately, it falls in late summer and not winter, when Prague's churches (and particularly benches in those churches) can get unbelievably cold!
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