The Russian Synodal Cathedral Choir of New York, under the direction of Peter Fekula, will perform a concert of sacred music to benefit the Synodal Building.|
The concert is dedicated to the memory of the victims of communism in Russia on this, the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the persecution of the Russian Church.
******* CONDUCTOR'S NOTES *******
Russian Orthodox sacred music did not disappear after the 1917 Revolution but continued to exist in a semi-underground state. Just as churches and monasteries were closed or destroyed, so too were the musical institutions and schools of the Russian Church dissolved or converted into secular institutions, no longer permitted to perform the role for which they were created. Artists, composers, conductors, and singers who did not submit to the demands of the atheist regime, or who simply failed to adapt to the new reality were publicly denounced, threatened, and had their privileges revoked. Many were unable to find any sort of accommodation with the new regime and ceased their compositional work altogether. And, some were killed the list of victims of Communist oppression in the Russian Orthodox Church contains the names of several composers who were martyred for their faith and actions; we will perform a piece by one of these men in todays concert.
Most of the composers represented in this program fall into two categories. The members of the first category faced an intolerable circumscription of their art and substantial danger as a result of having remained in the Soviet Union, and in at least one case, paid the ultimate price. The members of the second category emigrated from the Soviet Union to escape Communism, a step that left a yawning hole in their lives the loss of their country, of their family, and of the sacred and artistic world they knew and loved.
In selecting the pieces for this program, we sought to perform works by these composers to remember them and their struggles. Further, some of the pieces were chosen for their subject matter, speaking as they do of grief, penitence, loss, and yet, as always, the triumph of redemption, hope, and faith.
We remember all those who suffered during the Communist era and it is our hope that, through this music, we can testify to the eternal, transformative power of art and to the indomitable spirit of people of faith and ideals.
Synodal Cathedral of the Icon of Our Lady of the Sign (View)
75 East 93rd Street (corner of Park Avenue; entrance through the courtyard)
New York, NY 10128
|Kid Friendly: No|
|Dog Friendly: No|
|Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!|