Monday, May 11, 2015

The True Hidden Soul of the Cathedral of Mexico

Over the last two weeks, I have written nine articles concerning the Grand Cathedral of the City of Mexico: its foundations, its chapels, its statues, its cupola, its bells and towers, its sacristy, its altars, its naves, its history and legends, yet in spite of all of this, some people continue to be critical.
The east side organ was the Cathedrals first,
built in Spain in 1695, by Don Jorge de Sesma.
It is 15 meters tall and 9 meters wide.
The west side organ was built entirely in Mexico
by Jose Nazarre, and finished in 1736.
The Chorus and the Organs interrupt the entire visual continuity of the principle aisle of the Cathedral is the most common line of criticism. But the question is, was this Cathedral built only to been seen, or was it built to be heard?
The outside view of the west side organ.

The Cathedral contains two monumental organs, possibly two of the largest organs in all of Mexico. Both organs were critically damaged in the fire of 1967 and only lately have they become completely restored to their former beauty.

The Cathedral is one of the cosponsors or co-organizers of the Baroque Organ Festivals held every few years here in Mexico, with concerts here in the Cathedral and at other churches with outstanding organs. Two years ago, for the bicentennial celebrations of the completion of the Cathedral there was the last National Organ Festival. Estela, my wife, and I, went to several of the concerts, and they were wonderful experiences. One equates Baroque Organ music with Bach, but frankly there are quite a few really outstanding composers of the XVII and XVIII centuries, both European and Mexican, who unknown to the general public. Francisco Lopez y Capillas is a composer that everyone who has a taste for Sacred Music should listen to. Francisco Lopez y Capillas seems to follow in the footsteps of Palestrina. He lived in Mexico City during the first half of the XVII century, and in the middle of the 1600s, he became music.

There is another organization in Oaxaca, that organizes Baroque Organ Festivals in churches built during the XVII and XVIII centuries throughout the state. Most of these organs had fallen into total abandonment until a local private foundation started to renew them, and organize concerts.



No comments:

Post a Comment