Today I observed two personal Good Friday traditions – one that I have not observed in many years and the other that I have honoured for neigh on half a century
For the first time in a long time I went to church for Good Friday liturgy. St Paul’s here in Charlottetown follows the tradition of a meditative service of spoken word and choral passages retelling the Passion story prefaced by the call to the ancient rite of Veneration of the Cross. The beautiful Harris sanctuary was, as is traditional, stripped bare of all ornamentation save a large wooden cross The spoken passages were taken from the Book of Common Prayer and the choral meditations in the tradition of the Hymnal with congregational participation. It was a simple service and moving in its simplicity and sincerity.
Then this afternoon I listened, as I have done every Good Friday for the past 43 years, to a recording of the Passione secondo Giovanni by Francesco Corteccia. A simple retelling of the Passion story in spoken word and choral meditations written in the 16th century, it is moving in its simplicity and sincerity.
Back in 2010 I created a video using photographs of a glorious altarpiece by the del Maino brothers and a few passages from this remarkable recording. I thought once again that I would share that video for this Good Friday 2018.
Again one of the small treasures, of so many, in the V&A collection was this altarpiece from Lombardy. Attributed to the del Maino brothers it would have been created in their workshop in Pavia. It was made for Sant’Agostino, Piacenza where it remained until 1841. The predella addresses the Nativity while the upper piece traces the events of the crucifixion. Back in my days as an avid record collector I had the wise counsel of my friend Alan when it came to buying things. Alan worked at Sam the Record Man’s and had a coterie of people that he would advise on what they should buy. If Alan said “buy it” I bought it and was very seldom disappointed. Back in 1975 he suggested that I purchase a Archiv recording of a little known Passion by Francesco Corteccia, a Florentine composer at the time of Cosimo di Medici. As…
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