In this concert, Haydn's music will be accompanied by the reading of José Saramago's text: The last seven words of Christ on the cross.
The string quartet version of The Last Seven Words of Christ on the Cross, one of Joseph Haydn's most symbolic works, often considered, paradoxically, to be an authentic “speechless oratory”. Haydn described in this way the context and circumstances that led him to compose this piece: “A canon from Cadiz asked me to compose an instrumental song about The last seven words of Christ on the cross. At the time, it was customary, in the Cathedral of Cádiz, to perform an oratory every year during Lent, the effect of which was remarkably reinforced by the fact that the walls, windows and pillars of the church were covered in black; only a large lamp hanging in the center broke this holy darkness. At noon all doors were closed and the music started. After an appropriate prelude, the bishop would rise to the chair, pronounce one of the seven Words and comment on it. Finishing, he went down and fell on his knees before the altar, praying. While praying, the space was filled with music.
Then the bishop went up to the chair and came down from it a second time, a third time. Each time the orchestra played after the new word was spoken. In my work, I had to take this situation into account. The task consisted of a sequence, without losing the public's attention, of seven Adages that should last, each, around ten minutes, and it was not easy. ”
In this concert, Haydn's timeless music will be accompanied by the reading of José Saramago's text: The last seven words of Christ on the cross.
Ana Pereira and José Pereira | Violins
Joana Cipriano | Viola
Tatiana Leonor | Cello
João Pires | Production
Luís Godinho | Staging and narration
Acknowledgment: José Saramago Foundation
Christ's last seven words on the cross – Joseph Haydn
Saturday, May 23 at 5:30 p.m. (75 min.)
Free admission subject to capacity restrictions.
Recommended for ages 10+
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Imagem: Josefa d'Óbidos, Ecce Homo, Banco de Portugal
- 23-05-2020 from 17:30 to 18:45
Acessible Visits: King Dinis’ Wall - Dialogued, tactile tour
24 may. - 11h00