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March 2013
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Passover and Holy Week on WFMT

The Last Supper by Peter Paul Rubens 1630-1631

The Last Supper by Peter Paul Rubens 1630-1631

Trying to predict when Easter Sunday will happen each year is a worthy challenge for any scholar. What the Christian world refers to as a “moveable feast,” pays tribute to the commonality of Judaism and Christianity. Easter is set according to the Hebrew calendar, an ancient lunar-based calendar. Our calendar, the Gregorian calendar, is based on cycles of the sun (or rather earth’s rotation); hence the discrepancy.

In the Rubens painting (right), Jesus and the apostles celebrate the feast of Passover, or The Last Supper. This painting comes out of a tradition which has arguably inspired the single greatest outpouring of art and music in the world: the celebration of Holy Week.

WFMT’s observance of the season begins Monday at 1:00 PM when Kerry Frumkin presents The Passover Story with The Western Wind and narrator Theodore Bickel.

Monday at 6:oo PM WFMT presents A Musical Feast for Passover with Itzhak Perlman.

Throughout the week, Bill McGlaughlin takes us through a study of J.S. Bach’s B Minor Mass (Monday – Friday at 7:00 PM, except Tuesday at 6:00 PM).

On Tuesday at 8:00 PM, WFMT records a very special reunion concert by the Vermeer Quartet, who continues their decades-long Holy Week tradition of performing Haydn’s The Seven Last Words of Christ (to be broadcast on Friday at 8:00 PM).

On Tuesday at 11:00 PM, tune into WFMT for Erich Korngold’s Passover Psalm.

On Thursday WFMT presents the Chicago Bach Project’s LIVE performance of Bach’s B Minor Mass with John Nelson, conductor; Nicole Cabell, soprano; Jane Henschel, mezzo-soprano; Stanford Olsen, tenor; Matthew Brook, bass; Chicago Bach Choir & Orchestra; Donald Nally, chorus master

On Friday at 8:00 PM, WFMT presents Tuesday’s reunion concert by the Vermeer Quartet featuring Haydn’s The Seven Last Words of Christ, recorded at St. James Cathedral. The performance includes meditations by: Dr. Jean Bethke Elshtain, Rev. Gregory R. Dell, Leslie Hunter, Dr. Martin E. Marty, The Very Rev. Joy E. Rogers, Dr. Rita Simó, Dr. Rajkumar Boaz Johnson, Dr. Jerry Root, Fr. Andrew M. Greeley

On Saturday at 5:00 PM, don’t miss the Holy Week edition of Relevant Tones. This week’s program features one of the most compelling composers alive today: Osvaldo Golijov and his treatment of the Passion according to St. Mark, La Pasión Según San Marcos .

On Sunday, March 31st, With Heart and Voice samples some of the treasures composed and performed for Easter at 6:00 AM. During the 12:00 PM hour, tune in for Bach’s Easter Oratorio and Rudolf’s Easter Chorale.


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