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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Celebrating Arvo Pärt at The Met

Metropolitan Museum of Art / New York / Music

Not to be missed. For one thing, the basilica acoustics of the gallery that houses the Temple of Dendur are made to order for Arvo Pärt’s chant-inspired musical idiom. For another, the sandstone architecture of the ancient monument in its minimalist glass box possesses a stripped-down radiance at one with the “holy minimalism” of Pärt’s sound world. No matter one’s personal belief system, the space and the music stir vibrations in the core of one’s being. Featuring the Schola Cantorum choir and the Grammy-winning Experiential Orchestra, the playlist strings together pearls from Pärt’s seven-decade career. There’s also a world-premiere preview of a piece for the reopening of the St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, crushed under the debris of the falling south tower of the World Trade Center on 9/11, which by grim coincidence was Pärt’s 66th birthday. Built as a private home in the early 19th century, later converted into a tavern, then consecrated in 1922, the structure that is no more stood a humble 22 feet in width, 56 feet front to back, and 35 feet high. Designed by Santiago Calatrava as a national shrine at better than triple the size, the replacement is on track to open its doors in 2022. —M.G.

Metropolitan Museum of Art 1000 5th Ave, New York, NY 10028, USA
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