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Concert of Remembrance and Meditation on the 1st Anniversary of the Passing of Pope John Paul II.

April 01, 2006

Concert of Remembrance and Meditation on the 1st Anniversary of the Passing of Pope John Paul II.

Concert of Remembrance and Meditation on the 1st Anniversary of the Passing of Pope John Paul II. The Consulate General of the Republic of Poland and the Polish Cultural Institute, In co-operation with the Polish Television, have the honor of inviting you to a Concert of Remembrance and Meditation on the 1st Anniversary of the Passing of Pope John Paul II.

"Do Not Quench the Spirit" Words of the Pope spoken in person by Jon Voight Academy Award winner Star of the recent CBS mini-series “Pope John Paul II”.

Organ concert by Bogusław Grabowski Maestro of St. Mary’s Basilica in Gdansk, Poland.

Sunday, April 2, 2006, from 4:30 to 5:15 PM at St. Patrick’s Cathedral

Fifth Avenue between 50th and 51st Street, New York City. Admission free

PROGRAM:

Mieczysław Surzyński /1866-1924/ Improvisations on the theme of an old Polish religious hymn, “O Holy God” („Święty Boże”), traditionally sung at times of great ceremony, need, or danger.

Mieczysław Surzyński, the most prominent Polish composer of organ music in the Romantic era, won First Prize in an organ competition in St. Petersburg in 1902 for his improvisation on “O Holy God,” published in 1906 to become his best-known work.

Bronius Kutavičius /b. 1932/ Sonata for organ, „Ad Patres", Sonata pagal M.K. Čiurlionio paveiksly cikla „Laidotuviu Simfonija” /Vilnius-Roduka 1983/

Bronius Kutavičius, a professor of composition at the Lithuanian Academy of Music, often draws on pagan themes as well as religious ones – using ritual magic chants together with biblical themes.

Words of the Pope read by Jon Voight

Bogusław Grabowski /b. 1955/ Improvisations on the theme of the oldest Polish religious hymn, “Bogurodzica” (“Mother of God”).

Also called “The Hymn of the Motherland”, it is a hymn of prayer of unknown origin, first recorded in writing at the beginning of the 15th century and related to the Latin liturgy with Greek and Old Church Slavonic influences.

JON VOIGHT, born 1933 in New York City, the grandson of a Czech immigrant, is one of American cinema’s most beloved and respected actors, the winner of an Oscar and three Golden Globes. His Catholic upbringing, schooling at Archbishop Stepinac High School, and studies at Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., gave him a moral focus that was to guide him in his future choice of roles, strengthening his reputation as a serious actor but sometimes limiting his own potential as a movie megastar. A casting call for a film adaptation of “Midnight Cowboy”, a book he had loved, inspired his suggestion that he and his friend Dustin Hoffman try out. Both got their roles and both got Oscar nominations in John Schlesinger’s 1969 Oscar-winning film. Voight’s best-known work includes “Deliverance”, “Catch 22”, “Conrack”, and “Coming Home”, about a quadriplegic Vietnam veteran, a role for which he won both an Oscar and the Golden Globe in 1978. Both through his choice of film roles over the years and through his dedication to a variety of charity projects, Jon Voight, whose real heroes include Gandhi, Mother Teresa, and Martin Luther King, Jr., has tried to be of service to the disadvantaged of the world. His physique, temperament, and moral focus made him an ideal choice for the role of Pope John Paul II in the 2005 CBS mini-series.

BOGUSLAW GRABOWSKI, born 1955 in Sopot, graduated from the Warsaw Music Academy in 1982, and became the main organist at St. Mary's Basilica in Gdansk in 1985. He has performed concerts in almost all major Polish venues and in Germany, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Sweden, Ukraine, Latvia and Russia, frequently performing for radio and television and with ten recordings to his credit. Increasingly he composes his own music. The premier performance in 1997 of his symphonic song “Ave Maria”, written for the 1,000th anniversary of the city of Gdansk, was welcomed with enthusiasm and honors. Grabowski has organized over 500 concerts with the participation of the world’s best organists, chamber musicians, choirs and orchestras, and designed and launched on-going recital cycles such as the Dominican Concerts and St. Mary’s Organ Evenings. In 1990 he founded the Gdansk Organ Centre, which promotes ancient and modern music in sacred buildings, most notably through its International Festival of Organ, Choir and Chamber Music. Currently he is professor of organ music at Gdansk Music Academy and Gdansk Institute of Theology, a branch of Lublin Catholic University.

http://www.polishculture-nyc.org/papiez_rocznica_more.htm

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