St. Olaf Parish to host Stabat Mater concert

Friday, Mar. 17, 2023
St. Olaf Parish to host Stabat Mater concert
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BOUNTIFUL — As part of its Lenten worship, St. Olaf Parish in Bountiful will host a performance of Giovanni Battista Pergolesi’s musical setting of Stabat Mater on March 26.

The piece, which is one of the composer’s most celebrated sacred works, was written as the 26-year-old Pergolesi lay dying of tuberculosis. His Stabat Mater is an arrangement of a 13th-century hymn portraying the Virgin Mary’s suffering as her son was crucified. It was originally commissioned by the Confraternita dei Cavalieri di San Luigi di Palazzo, which presented an annual Good Friday meditation in honor of the Virgin Mary.

“It is just poignant and beautiful,” said St. Olaf Parish Director of Music Holly Dodge of the composition.

Stabat Mater is commonly sung during the liturgy on the memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows, Sept. 15, and also during the Stations of the Cross at Lent. The author of the original hymn is unknown.

The performance at St. Olaf will be by parish musicians along with the Bountiful Chamber Musicians, a newly formed chamber orchestra of professional and semi-professional musicians from Davis County. This will be the inaugural concert for the group, which is directed by Darrin Therriot, University of Utah School of Music adjunct assistant professor.  Therriot, who recently retired after 26 years with the nation’s premier military bands, is the visiting director of the university’s wind ensemble.

Four local vocalists with ties to the parish will be the soloists for the performance. They are Madeline Braukmann, a soprano and social studies and religion teacher at St. Olaf Catholic School and former Gonzaga University choir member; Rae Dodge, alto, director of the violin program at St. Olaf Catholic School; Sophia Dodge, soprano student at the University of Utah; and Ronak Tathireddy, soprano, and eighth-grader at The Madeleine Choir School.

Last year the parish hosted a performance of Vivaldi’s Stabat Mater on Good Friday, but performers requested an opportunity to perform Pergolesi’s interpretation of the sequence, Holly Dodge said.

The concert is free and open to the public. “We really want to include the community,”  Dodge said. “This is a lot of effort, and we want people to share it.”

Dodge encourages local Catholics to attend the performance and make it part of their Easter preparation. “The Seven Sorrows of Mary are something to reflect on during Lent,” she said.

WHAT: Stabat Mater performance

WHEN; Sunday, March 26, 4 p.m.

WHERE: St. Olaf Catholic Church, 276 E. 1700 S., Bountiful

Free and open to the public.

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