I went to church full of dread after the recent terrorist attacks. Worship included dedicating a new pipe organ. Was it appropriate to be celebrating in the midst of the hatred and fear?
Sitting beside my best friend, we tensed as policemen clubbed civil rights protesters. We teared up as Martin Luther King Jr. marched alongside James Bevel, as Coretta Scott King talked with Malcolm X, and as the leaders of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee strained to relate to their elders. Selma was an experience: visceral, soulful, inspiring, and shocking. A visual image that struck me was based in sound: microphone before King, organ pipes behind him.
Stephen Schloesser considers Olivier Messiaen and his music through the lens of a broad-based cultural history. This is fitting and welcome.