Visita Los Venerables
Music Program 2013-2014

Music Program 2013-2014


The Baroque organ: a bridge between peoples opposed by religion

The Baroque period (17th and 18th centuries) is key to the development of the different European organ schools that appeared during the last century, defining their differentiating characteristics and their personalities. However, it is also crucial to reaffirming the separation of the different Christian faiths, which occurred when the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century gave rise to the communities primarily based in Northern Europe breaking away from Rome. This would lead to major changes in both the doctrinal and disciplinary landscape, with the creation of new liturgies and religious expressions, the appearance of new vernaculars that would replace Latin, the official language of the church, etc.

The organ is an instrument that the church has embraced since the 10th century, shaping its internal structure and giving it its role in religious worship. Since the 16th century, when worshipping God was diversified by the Lutheran and Calvinist reformations and the Counter-Reformation of the Council of Trent, it has taken on various roles. It acquired a more important position in some churches (Lutheran and Catholic), while it was relegated in others (Calvinist); leading to the appearance of new musical forms (choral, biblical verse, interludes, hymns, etc.), being used solely to accompany singing or as a solo instrument. This explosion of different formats did not take long to cross borders, with the exchange of musical scores, techniques and even musicians, composers and performers, and profound musical connections becoming established between different European peoples and Christian religions. The organ therefore became a channel for communication between people from different religions.

Given all this history, this year we have invited three great organists of the current European organ to perform at the Master Concerts series in February. They are Lorenzo Guielmi, organist of the Basilica of San Sulpiciano in Milan (Italy); Matteo Imbruno, organist of the Oude Kerk in Amsterdam (Holland) and Johannes Unger, organist of St. Marien in Lübeck (Germany). All are indisputable Baroque maestros in their respective countries, and resident organists in emblematic locations with different faiths, such as Milan, Amsterdam and Lübeck.

They will show that the organ and its music unifies the language in which we praise and relate to God, even though the theological and disciplinary differences between the churches may have separated us and set us against one another during centuries, forming a barrier to our desired unity even today. But music knows no boundaries and in the organ has found one of its most fervent means of communication and unity.

Master concerts: 10, 17 and 24 February, given by:

Educational and cultural activities