Arvo Pärt in Manchester: music that fulfils a deep human need

That's How The Light Gets In

During the interval at last night’s magnificent Arvo Pärt concert at the Bridgewater Hall I sneaked a look at the latest news on my phone. At the Brussels eurozone summit, Greece was being forced to accept financial colonialism in terms as humiliating as those imposed on Germany at Versailles in 1919.

Back in the concert hall, the programme of Pärt’s sublime continued with his impassioned work for orchestra and solo soprano, Como cierva Sedienta. With its declamatory choruses, it seemed to speak to the ugly mood in Brussels:

Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.

Why hast thou forgotten me? Why go I in mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?

My sense that the music somehow echoed the confrontation in Brussels perhaps offers a partial explanation for the enormous popularity of Pärt’s music in…

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