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The Week of Prayer — A Concert of Sacred Music
Sun, January 17, 2021 12:00 PM, EST
On Sunday January the 17th join soprano Natalia Pavlova, Persian Cellist Nasim Saad and organist Alessandra Ciccaglioni as they draw us into a world of sacred vocal and organ music from the Italian baroque to the present.
This musical journey is dedicated to the Week of Prayer, and will be broadcast from the beautiful antique titular Church of St. Marcellus in the center of Rome. The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is an ecumenical observance in the Christian calendar that is celebrated throughout the world. It is held annually between Ascension Day and Pentecost in the Southern Hemisphere and between 18th and and 25th of January in the Northern Hemisphere.
More information about the Church:
Inside the church there is the crucifix that is considered significant—it contains a relic of the True Cross. In 1519 a fire completely destroyed the church, and apart from the outer walls, the only item that survived was a 15th century wooden crucifix which is now to be found in the Chapel. The preservation of this crucifix was considered miraculous, and devotion to it increased enormously in 1522 when an epidemic stopped just as a penitential procession was held with it. Recently Pope Francesco has visited the church and prayed for the safety of the world, and to ward off the pandemic.
St Marcellus at the Corso, dedicated to Pope Marcellusi s a 16th century conventual and titular church on 4th century foundations, it is located just inside from Via del Corso, in ancient times called via Lata, just near to Piazza Venezia.
The legend of the church's foundation is, like we now, that the pagan emperor Maxentius decided to condemn Pope Marcellus to work as a slave in the city terminus of the department of the Cursus Publicus operating on the Via Flaminia. The city end of this road was the Via Lata, the present Corso, and the so-called catabulum (an unfamiliar Latin word) had very large stables used by lots of horses. The pope had to clean these out with his bare hands, and died as a result of nausea induced by the smell. After Maxentius was overthrown, the city's Christians then converted the stables into a basilica in the pope's memory.
The church was restored by Pope Adrian I (772-95). The relics of Pope Marcellus were brought from San Silvestro a Priscilla by Pope Gregory IV and enshrined here. Parts of the original palaeochristian basilica have been excavated by digging a little network of passages under the church.
Architects Antonio Sangallo the Younger and Carlo Fontana completely rebuilt the church in 1590. In the baroque epoch inside the church worked famous artists such as Antonio Raggi, Francesco Cavallini, Rinaldo Rinaldi, Daniele da Volterra and others.. all the works they created within the church have been preserved up to the present time.
G. Frescobaldi "Toccata per l'Elevazione dai "Fiori Musicali"(organ)
G. Legrenzi-duetto from opera "La divisione del mondo" (cello, voice, organ)
A. Caldara-cantata "Rosà" (voice, organ, cello)
N. Porpora - Solfeggio (the 2nd part ) (organ, cello, voice)
G. Pergolesi- duetto Stabat Mater from Stabet Mater (cello, voice, organ)
I S Bach - Courante from Suite No. 4 (cello)
V. A. Mozart-Laudate Dominum from "Vesperae solennes K339
(organ, cello, voice)
Nino Rota - Salve Regina (voice & organ)
D. Shostakovic - Ofelia's song after Block's poem (cello & voice)
Sollima-" Giotto Dante"from "Viaggio in Italia) (cello & voice)
Iraida Yusupova - Ave Maria (organ, voice, cello)
Moscow and Rome-based soprano Natalia Pavlova (who is a descendant of Russian national poet Alexander Pushkin) has graced the stages of Carnegie Hall, Moscow Chaikovsky State Conservatory, Auditorium Parco della Musica (Rome), and many others throughout the world.
Active in performing music from antiquity to today, she was a soloist for 6 years in the Moscow theater School of Dramatic Art, directed by Anatoly Vasiliev. Natalia has sung world premiere performances and recordings of works by composers Giovanni Sollima, Venus Rey and Iraida Yusupova, composed specially for her voice, as well as pieces by Vladimir Martynov. She serves on Artistic Council of The First Cultural International Festival, Russian-Rome, Palazzo Poli in Rome, and was recently awarded the Silver Lion at the Narnia International Festival, as well as the International "Clean Sound" Award. She recorded 3 CD with contemporary music in Da Vinci Classics ( Japan) and in Art Classics (Moscow)
Opera, Baroque/Early Music, Contemporary Music
NASIM SAAD (cello)
Praised for her sincere musical expression and capturing stage presence, Persian cellist Nasim Saad has built a brilliant career performing as a chamber musician, soloist and orchestral musician, regularly performing at major venues.Nasim is one of the soloists who played Tan Dun’s “Four Secret Roads of Marco Polo”, with the prestigious Filarmonica della Scala Orchestra, conducted by TadDun himself. As a soloist she has performed with orchestras such as the Puccini Festival Orchestra and the Tehran Symphony Orchestra and has appeared in exclusive intercultural performances in Europe and the Middle East as a representative of her country.
Her true passion for chamber music has brought her to perform with renowned artists such as Bruno Giuranna, Calogero Palermo, Alessio Allegrini and many more. As a recital and chamber performer she has been invited to festivals such as the Belem music Festival in Lisbon, Bari Accademia dei Cameristi in Italy and Fajr music Festival in Tehran. She has taken part in various chamber music concerts with I Cameristi della Scala and MFHR. Nasim’s orchestral experiences started when she was in her teens and eventually led her to play with the most distinguished Orchestras until this day. She has been chosen by Daniel Barenboim to become a member of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra. She has had constant collaborations with the Orchestra del Teatro alla Scala, Orchestra Nazionale di Santa Cecilia and other main Italian orchestras, giving her the privilege to regularly work with world renowned conductors such as Riccardo Chailly, Valery Gergiev, Zubin Mehta, Sir Antonio Pappano, Gianandrea Noseda, Semyon Bychkov, Kirill Petrenko, Daniel Harding, Daniele Gatti, Fabio Luisi, Chung Myung-whun…and perform in the most prestigious international classical music Festivals on a yearly basis.
She Completed her second Master’s Degree in performance under Professor Thomas Demenga at the Musik-Akademie Basel. Before that, for five consecutive years, she won a scholarship from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Italy, where she completed her Bachelor’s and Master’s degree with honors. Over the years she has received indispensable guidance from Wolfgang Boettcher, Enrico Bronzi, Giovanni Sollima, Thomas Grossenbacher and Michael Flaksman.
ALESSANDRA CICCAGLIONI (organ)
Born in Rome, graduated in organ at the S. Cecilia Conservatory of music by A. Pavoni.
She attended masterclass by various organists such as L. Lohmann, B. van Oosten and F. Cera and played for different festival/churches in Rome (Un organo per Roma, Mascagni young generation festival, Rassegna organistica S. Maria della Mercede, S. Marcello al Corso, S. Alfonso de’ Liguori, S. Maria Odigitria and others). She is a principal organist at the church of S. Francesco a Ripa in Trastevere in Rome (Italy)