“The time I burned my guitar it was like a sacrifice. You sacrifice the things you love. I love my guitar.”
“I’m gonna put a curse on you and all your kids will be born completely naked.”
Thomson was a Kansas City native who studied at Harvard and eventually moved to Paris where he became friends with artistic luminaries like Pablo Picasso, Aaron Copland, Ernest Hemingway and Gertrude Stein, who the libretto for Thomson’s opera “Four Saints in Three Acts.” Wherever Thomson went, however, he always took Kansas City with him, and the sound of the prairie is heard in many of his works.
“I said to my friends that if I was going to starve, I might as well starve where the food is good.”
He was the organist for St. Nicholas Church in Oberndorf bei Salzburg. He wrote the music for Silent Night (Stille Nacht). Father Joseph Mohr wrote the lyrics. It was first performed at Midnight Mass in St. Nicholas Church in 1818. The original church was destroyed by a flood in 1899, but there is a “Silent Night” chapel standing in its place today. The six-minute video below gives a nice tour of the church and Oberndorf.
“I have observed that people who are moved by music are more sensitive to all manifestations of life”
Today is also the feast of ST. CECILIA, the patron saint of music, a fact which Benjamin Britten found deeply significant. Here is Britten’s Hymn to St. Cecilia.
According to BBC Music Magazine, the Slovak soprano is ranked number seven on the list of 20 Greatest Sopranos of the Recorded Era.