We went to Marseille today. Marseille is beautiful, bustling port city that has lots of energy and lots of people from all over the world in the streets. Since Marseille was founded by the Greeks over 2000 years ago, a the locals think of Marseilles as the true capital of France. There is a lot of old architecture, and a couple of churches built in neo-Bizintine style with the alternating color of the stones and mix of Eastern and Western architectural styles. We have shrimp for lunch, which was great.
We got back from Marseille just a little late for Lundi de Pentecôte, a concert of Bach’s BWV 173 Erhöhtes Fleisch und Blut et 184 Erwünschtes Freudenlicht at the St. Jean de Malte Cathedral. Bach wrote the music for Pentecost, and fortunately the priest was still explaining the music when we walked in, and there were a few open seats, so we didn’t miss a note. The performance was fantastic, and sound in the 13th century cathedral was outstanding. The musicians played baroque instruments and the vocalists were phenomenal. They also had a couple of modern pieces which were performed by three people playing the pipe organ simultaneously. The pieces were Le jar din suspendu by Jehan Alain (1911-1940) and Le vent de l’Esprit: sortie se la messe de la Pentecôte by Olivier Messiaen (1908-1992). The modern was not the type of organ music I would seek out, but it was well performed and interesting. The orchestra and vocalists got a standing ovation, and we brought them back for an encore.