Skip to comments.FReeper Canteen ~ Sunday Chapel ~ Happy Easter: He Is Risen! ~ 31 March 2013
Posted on 03/30/2013 5:04:55 PM PDT by Kathy in Alaska
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Our Flag Flying Proudly One Nation Under God
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Lord, Please Bless Our Troops, They're fighting for our Freedom.
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God Bless Our Republic
I pledge allegiance to the Flag
of the United States of America,
and to the Republic, for which it stands;
one nation UNDER GOD,
with liberty and justice for all.
Prayers going up
Good evening, Kathy.
Happy Easter, Ma. Thinking of you and your family.
A Blessed Lord’s Day and Happy Easter to the MacNessa family.
My computer picked me pushing the post button time to lock up. GRRR! Reboot time.
Have you had a restful and nice day?
Happy (almost) Easter to you, Kathy! Hope all is well and your Mom is doing okay. Hugs and bigger hugs! Love ya, Mom
Happy Easter to all Freepers.
Good Lord's Day and Shavua Tov to you!
Happy (almost) Easter to you, Kathy! Hope all is well and your Mom is doing okay. Hugs and bigger hugs! Love ya, Mom
Wishing all our Jewish troops, veterans, families, allies, friends, and Canteeners
a peaceful and prosperous week.
Bill Hess | Herald/Review
FORT HUACHUCA The installation chaplains office invites the community to take part in an Easter celebration. The Easter sunrise worship service begins at 6:30 a.m., Sunday on Reservoir Hill.
The morning message will be given by the Network Enterprise Technology Command Chaplain (Col). Dan Minjares. Refreshments will follow the service.
Attendees should dress warmly for this outdoor event.
Its amazing that Gustav Mahler had any time to write his songs and symphonies considering that he spent almost all of his time conducting. Born in 1860, he had conducted operas and orchestras in a variety of back-country European venues before arriving in Budapest in 1888. It was there that lightning struck.
Our old friend Johannes Brahms took the train from Vienna to Budapest to visit some of his cronies, and they decided to take him to the opera. Young Gus was conducting Mozarts Don Giovanni that night, and they wanted Old Jo to hear the new kid on the block. Brahms said he would go only if they got a box with a couch so that he could sleep through the opera. Jo knew how he wanted that opera to sound, and he doubted anyone else had his vision. Brahms had just plopped himself down on the couch for a snooze when Gus gave the downbeat, and the orchestra opened with those thunderous chords from hell in the overture. Jo sat bolt upright, and for the next four hours his attention was focused on this new kid in the orchestra pit. After the opera, Brahms raced backstage to talk to Mahler, and a professional relationship was formed.
Brahms had a lot of clout, and he managed to get Mahler a gig in Hamburg, his own hometown. Everywhere Gus went, he concentrated on improving the quality of performances and the general music climate, and Hamburg was no exception. Brahms saw Hamburg as a test venue to see if Gus was ready for Vienna, and Brahms lived long enough to see Mahler get the conducting job at the Vienna State Opera in 1897.
In those days the Vienna State Opera was a decrepit institution, and Mahler stepped on a lot of toes to make it one of the top opera companies in Europe. Vienna was a city of musical intrigues, and Mahlers Jewishness made him a target. He converted to Catholicism to move one step ahead of his enemies, although privately he was an agnostic. Among his worst enemies was Vienna Mayor Karl Lüger, master anti-Semite and political idol of the future Adolph Hitler. Mahler was forced out of town in 1908, and he went to New York, where he got the conducting job at the Metropolitan Opera and New York Philharmonic.
His three years in New York were tumultuous, and in 1911 he came down with an infected throat that turned out to be rheumatic fever. There were no antibiotics in those days, and Mahler went home to Vienna to die. He almost made it to his 51st birthday.
His music was banned in Germany by Hitler and was almost forgotten everywhere else. After the war, it was young Leonard Bernstein who singlehandedly brought Mahlers music back from oblivion and turned him into a mainstream composer.
The Second Symphony
The first movement was finished a decade before the rest of the piece, and Mahler had conducted that movement separately to some acclaim under the name Funeral Celebration. By 1894 he was looking through poetry, folk songs and even the Bible to find some way of continuing the piece. Three more short movements were put on paper, but the finale eluded him.
You may remember Hans von Bülow from my retrospective on Brahms and heard the story of how Wagner had stolen Hans wife from him. Hans died in 94, and at the funeral a small choir sang a hymn with words from Klopstocks poem Resurrection. Gus suddenly found his inspiration. Finishing the symphony came easy from that point onward.
Unable to find funding for the monumental production, Mahler dug into his own pocket, paid for it and handed out free tickets to teachers and students at the various music conservatories in Berlin for the premiere in 1895. This was a risky strategy because music professionals are harder on their colleagues than anyone else. At the final tumultuous E-flat chord that ends the piece, the place went wild. Grown men hugged each other and cried like babies. Youll hear why in about 90 minutes.
This live video is Bernsteins 1974 performance with the London Symphony Orchestra, and its entire. Open the video in a separate window, or print off this posting for a roadmap.
It begins with an idea taken from Schubert by way of Berlioz. Its the death of the hero from Mahlers First Symphony.
5:55: The brass takes up a theme that will play a critical role in the finale when the dead march out of their graves.
8:06: The second subject begins. Mahler relaxes that introduction into a theme on tenor oboe that is a tip of the hat to Wagner and his Magic Fire Music.
10:10: The march picks up and accelerates into a sea voyage where you can hear the waves wash over the ship.
12:12: Shipwreck! But our hero survives!
13:36: We return to the present with a bang. The funeral march picks up quietly and slowly.
15:45: Our hero goes to war!
16:09: Cavalry charge! Its a scene of blood and chaos. (This theme will show up in the finale also.)
17:24: He goes down bravely in battle. (Audiences unfamiliar with the piece stupidly applaud here.) Mahler returns to the opening theme for his recapitulation.
19:24: Resignation and peace.
19:56: Gus recaps the Magic Fire subject. Those swooning portamenti on the strings are just delicious.
21:50: We return to the present, and the funeral march starts again.
22:37: We hear the nightingale, the Eastern European folk symbol of death, on the flute, which will play a critical role in the finale.
23:26: The coda begins, and the movement resolves almost calmly.
24:56: The trumpets two notes are a tip of the hat to his good friend Richard Strauss, and the coffin is lowered into the ground with unseemly haste.
This is one of Mahlers least complicated symphonic movements, a ländler in 3/4 and A-flat, in format A-B-A-B-A. Its a slow movement and a remembrance of happier times in the past.
25:47: The A theme.
27:34: The B theme presented quietly.
29:23: Return of the A theme.
31:25: The B theme returns violently.
34:03: The A theme returns in pizzicato and ends serenely.
In the finale, Mahler will ask one of the core questions of humanity and the absolute core question at the heart of Christianity. You dont just jump into something like that; you set the table carefully, and thats the role of the Third and Fourth Movements.
Back in the early 19th Century, Achim von Arnim and Clemens Brentano collected old German folk songs into a poetry collection titled The Boys Magic Horn. The magic horn in question is what we refer to as a cornucopia, and the authors saw these little gems of the German-speaking past falling out of it.
In 1893 Mahler had set one of these poems, St. Anthony Preaches to the Fish, as a song with orchestral accompaniment. The idea behind the song was that even though St. Anthony was eloquent, nothing changed. The pikes remain thieves, the eels great amorists, the sermon was a success, they all stayed the same. Mahler takes the orchestral material for this song and uses it as his scherzo movement in C minor and 3/4.
Up until now, the symphony has been about the death of one person. In this movement, we get the first hint that Mahler is about to work on a gigantic canvas and ask questions that pertain not to just one man, but to all mankind. There is a beautiful sense of flow to this movement. Its almost water music, but with a sardonic edge.
41:21: The trumpets get a chance to clown around a bit.
42:23: Things ratchet up in a big way, relax and then ratchet up again.
43:19: The trumpets, who first clowned around, now sing a song of contentment, then are joined by the strings.
44:40: The scherzo picks up again.
46:43: Something huge is about to happen, as the pace accelerates to
47:01: The End of the World! This is the first time we will hear the End of the World motif, in a flash-forward, and it will appear twice in the finale. Each time something different follows. Its tumultuous, swirling string figurations which the brass lead to C minor. What follows here is a passage for trumpets, to be heard again at a critical point in the finale, The underlying pulse is the 3/4 of the scherzo.
48:15: The scherzo picks up and finishes up quietly with a stroke of the gong.
With an attacca (no pause), Mahler introduces voice into the piece for the first time. The contralto sings a poem, Primal Light, from The Boys Magic Horn, set to music by Mahler in D-flat Major. This moves the action from one man to mankind. The brass choir may represent angels.
O Röschen rot! (Oh red rose!)
Der Mensch liegt in größter Not! (Mankind lies in greatest need!)
Der Mensch liegt in größter Pein! (Mankind lies in greatest pain!)
Je lieber möcht ich im Himmel sein! (Would that I were in heaven!)
Listen to what he does on the word Himmel! A short orchestral interlude leads to:
Da kam ich auf einen breiten Weg: (I found myself upon a broad path:)
Da kam ein Engelein under wollt mich abweisen. (I came upon an angel who would bar my way.)
Ach nein! Ich liess mich nicht abweisen! (Ah no, I would not turn back.)
She gathers up her strength and sings with the moral certitude of the Saved:
Ich bin von Gott and will wieder zu Gott! (I am from God and want to return to God!)
Der liebe Gott wird mir ein Lichtchen geben, (The loving God will give me a little light,)
Wird leuchten mir bis in das ewig selig leben! (And illuminate me to the everlasting, blessed life!)
Listen to what he does on the word leuchten! He delays the resolution into D-flat to illustrate utter certainty and serenity.
The questions Mahler wished to answer were: Is there life after death? Is any of what the great religions teach real? Or is this all a bad joke on mankind? The result is nothing less than a theology set to music. Every note has led to this moment, and Mahlers finale is one of the most amazing 35 minutes in music.
It starts with an attacca into the End of the World motif, and this time its for real!
55:13: What follows is chaos, resolving into calm.
56:40: Gabriel and his cohorts sound the brass offstage.
57:15: This begins statements of all the themes Mahler will be working with in this movement, but stated instrumentally and without chorus.
58:06: This is the introduction and Sunburst, focusing on trombone, but understated so as not dominate the proceedings; it will later accompany the words, What once has lived must perish. Gabriel joins with his offstage brass section.
1:00:21: The Believe theme, to be sung later by contralto.
1:01:30: The What once has lived theme, stated by brass choir.
1:02:30: This player needs no introduction. He is illustrated by the Sunburst in C Major. Things calm down, and the drums roll.
1:05:00: God gives the word. In a moment of horror, the graves of the world open, disgorging their inhabitants. This is first movement material, and now he develops it as the March of the Dead in F Major. Here they come: beggars, serfs, soldiers, merchants, popes, kings, all of them returning from the grave.
1:06:38: The cathedral bells sound, joining the march. Mahler writes for violins and flutes far above their normal range.
1:07:22: Violins screech and flutes scream!
1:08:32: Chaos! The march collapses.
1:08:56: The Believe theme returns on trombone, but nobody appears to be believing. Skeletons dance in derision via offstage brass and percussion.
1:10:25: The chaos gets organized and leads into
1:10:54: The End of the World motif for the final time! But this time it leads to calm. The worst is over.
1:12:46: Gabriel and his offstage brass ask if there is anything else left in the grave. Yes, there is!
1:13:49: The nightingale, played by the flute, sings as he flies out of the grave. Death itself has died. The nightingale duets with the angels.
1:15:32: What has gone before is now worked out with chorus. Mahler brings the chorus in quietly a capella, against all custom of the era, and the audience in Berlin gasped. The words are from Friedrich Klopstocks poem, Resurrection.
Aufersten, ja auferstehn wirst du, (You will rise, yes, rise,)
Mein Staub, nach kurzer Ruh! (My dust, after short rest!)
Unsterblich Leben! Unsterblich Leben (Undying life! Undying life)
Wird der dich rief dir geben. (Will He who called give you.)
The soprano joins before the Sunburst is stated quietly. The chorus picks up again a capella until joined by the brass and soloist.
Wieder aufzublühn wirst du gesät! (You will bloom again!)
Der Herr der Ernte geht (The Lord of the Harvest goes)
Und sammelt Garben (And gathers sheaves)
Uns ein, die starben! (For us who died.)
1:21:07: The orchestra plays a passage of sweet surrender.
1:22:16: For the first time we hear the Resurrection theme, which bears a striking resemblance to Richard Strauss Transfiguration theme. A tip of the hat to a friend.
1:22:58: The contralto sings new material written by Mahler as an addition to Klopstocks poem. Its the Believe theme.
O glaube, mein Herz, O glaube; (O believe, my heart, O believe:)
Es geht dir nichts verloren! (Nothing is lost to you!)
Dein ist, was du gesehnt! (What you have desired is yours!)
Dein, was du geliebt, (Yours, what you has loved,)
Was du gestritten! (What you have struggled for!)
1:23:59: The soprano takes up the next verse of Mahler.
O glaube, (O believe,)
Du wardst nicht umsonst geboren! (You were not born in vain!)
Hast nicht umsonst gelebt, (You have not lived in vain,)
Gelitten! (Or anguished!)
The chorus enters.
Was enstanden ist, (What once has lived,)
Das muss vergehen! (Must perish!)
The chorus almost shouts, accompanied by brass choir.
Was vergangen, auferstehen! (What has gone rises again!)
The chorus comes back a capella and very softly with an admonition. They are joined full voice by the contralto.
Hör auf zu beben! (Stop trembling!)
Bereite dich zu leben! (Prepare yourself for life!)
1:26:09: The strings start a passage for contralto.
O Schmerz! Du Alldurchdringer! (O pain, you who pierce all!)
Dir bin ich entrungen! (From you Im plucked!)
The soprano enters.
O Tod! Du Allbezwinger! (O death, you who conquer all!)
Nun bist du bezwungen! (Now you are conquered!)
This is worked up as a canon by the soloists.
1:28:55: The chorus enters, building a canon.
Mit Flügeln, die ich mir errungen, (With wings that I have earned,)
In heissem Liebesstreben, (In the hot struggle of love,)
Werd ich entschweben (I will fly up)
Zum licht, zu dem kein Aug gedrungen! (To the light no eye has reached!)
The chorus unites.
Sterben werd ich, um zu leben! (I will die to live!)
Mahler piles it on, bringing in the organ for the Resurrection theme, now stated by the chorus. Have your tissues ready.
Auferstehn, ja auferstehn (You will rise, yes rise)
Wirst du, mein Herz, in einem Nu! (My heart, in an instant!)
Was du geschlagen (What youve struggled for)
And here Mahler goes into 12-part harmony.
Zu Gott wird es dich tragen! (Will carry you to God!)
Mahler brings in the full orchestra for the Resurrection theme, which he finishes quietly. This leads to a tumultuous ending and a resounding E-flat chord that echoes through the Universe.
Now you know why grown men cried.
He is risen indeed.
Prayers for our troops, veterans, families, allies, friends, and Canteeners
for a safe and peaceful week ahead.