Friday, September 14, 2007


Suscepit Israel puerum suum recordatus miserecordiae suae.
He has helped Israel his servant in remembrance of his mercy.
From the Bach Magnificat, possibly the greatest piece of choral music ever written.
Sometimes we think classical misuc was carved on a stone someplace, never to be tooled around with; yet, Bach rewrote and transposed this to help instrumentalists play it. It took him three years to finish this step, doubtless while attending to a myriad of other things.
Dr. Robert Barr picked this out for my group to sing in the early 1970s at Murray State. He was one of those instructors who opened music up to dozens of future teachers, and he remains my fondest memory of my days at Murray (that didn't involve a lady, at least!)