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  • Writer's pictureChurch Muse

In Paradisum - In Paradise - Gabriel Fauré's Requiem

Today Marty and I lost a dear young friend to cancer (only 51 years old), Ryan Anthony. I had posted a performance of him playing, “You’ll Never Walk Alone” in one of my earlier muse blogs. If you haven't heard it yet, go find it here! He was a beautiful trumpet player, and a truly real and honest human being. A young man fighting a cancer that usually hits older people, he won many battles in his journey, and created a foundation for the purpose of funding the crusade against cancer: “Cancer Blows,” supported in part by performances by great trumpet players from around the world.

As we grieve, I’m reminded by a little “music in my ear” worm that happened a few days ago. It just popped in there, so I jotted it down in my notes. In paradisum. It is part of the Requiem mass, the last movement, and is sung by a choir as the body is being taken out of the church.

My particular ear worm comes from Gabriel Fauré’s Requiem. The reason that I know this piece so well is not because I have sung it; I was offered the privilege to play the organ with the Montréal Symphony and chorus on this requiem in a performance at Carnegie Hall in 1999. It was a matter of being in the right place at the right time, and just after Marty and I had started dating, so it is very special to me. I still pinch myself to believe that it really happened.

So here we go, another “coming together” of music and thought. We have lost Ryan, our friend, and our world continues to lose so many more people from the awful Corona disease, which is so easily spread. The translation to the text of this segment of the mass is: “May the angels lead you into paradise; may the martyrs receive you at your arrival and lead you to the holy city Jerusalem. May choirs of angels receive you and may you have eternal rest.”

I know that Ryan is with the angels, and I pray that all those lost to Covid-19 are right there with him.

This recording is the Montréal Symphony and Chorus, although is is not me playing the organ part:

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1 Comment

kristi bruton
Jun 24, 2020

I'm so sorry for your loss of a good friend. This was beautiful.

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