VATICAN CITY, 1 SEP 2011 (VIS) – Yesterday evening in the internal courtyard of the Apostolic Palace at Castelgandolfo, the Holy Father attended a concert in his honour organised by Cardinal Domenico Bartolucci, former director of the Choir of the Sistine Chapel.

The programme included four pieces composed by Cardinal Bartolucci himself: the poem “Benedictus”, specially written for this occasion, for soprano, choir and three equal voices; the “Ave Maria” from the opera “Il Brunellesco” for soprano, choir and three equal voices; the sacred poem “Baptisma” for soprano, baritone, female choir and small orchestra, and the motet “Christus circumdedit me” for soprano, choir and orchestra.

The soloists, sopranos Enrica Fabbri and Lykke Anholm and baritone Michele Govi, as well as the Rossini Chamber Choir of Pesaro and the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Marches “FORM” were conducted by Simone Baiocchi.

At the end of the performance the Pope made some brief remarks. “For you”, he said in his thanks to Cardinal Bartolucci, “music is a special language with which to communicate the faith of the Church and to help those who hear your works along their own journey of faith”.

“This evening” Benedict XVI concluded, “you caused us to turn our hearts to Mary in prayer, the most beloved prayer of Christian tradition. Yet you also led us back to the beginning of our journey of faith, to the liturgy of Baptism, the moment in which we became Christian: an invitation always to drink from the only water that can quench our thirst – the living God – and to commit ourselves day after to day to rejecting evil and to renewing our faith with the affirmation ‘I believe!'”

BXVI-CONCERT/                                                                           VIS 20110901 (290)