O how I would love to be at this lecture in London!
James MacMillan, an accomplished composer of sacred music, will give a lecture on Sat 26 January (14.30 – 15.30) will give a talk for the Royal Philharmonic Society.
He wrote to me saying:
In this lecture I will focus on Elgar’s Catholicism and why it has been underplayed; the importance of religion in culture, and will cite TS Eliot’s suggestion that the rejection of religious tradition leads to the reduction of vision in the arts.
On the site of the Royal Philharmonic we read this blurb:
James MacMillan is one of today’s most successful living composers and is also internationally active as a conductor. His musical language is flooded with influences from his Catholic faith, social conscience and Scottish heritage. Taking Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius as a starting point he will examine the idea of Elgar as a visionary artist and explore how social, cultural and religious thought, combined with the pioneering spirit and drive of Edwardian Culture in England, shaped artistic thought through the Twentieth Century and beyond. Celebrating the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Bicentenary and linked to the LPO’s performance of Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius, these events are a part of the Southbank Centre’s The Rest Is Noise Festival.
I envy my friends in London.