Judith Conrad, clavichord: Music for the Holy Grail

The program was entirely music by Juan Bautista Cabanilles (1644-1711), so we talked about whether the galliard would actually have been danced “on the altar” at Corpus Christi. I thought Ken Pierce would have enjoyed dancing the galliard he did on Monday on top of the altar.

We also discussed whether the Tiento‘s de falsas, which are similar to Frescobaldi elevation tocattas would have been played at the elevation. The performer thought that they went on pretty long for a priest to hold his arms up, but then remembered a story about the priest dropping the Santo Caliz, and decided maybe it was the organist’s fault for playing too long.

The playing, like a lot of playing at the festival suffered at the beginning from the performer having had inadequate time to warm up, but was fluid and engaging by the end.


The Paulist Center Library was comfortably full — people came and went a bit, but there must have been at least 30 people. There seem to be keyboard geeks who come to the festival and don’t bother with much that isn’t keyboard playing, so I never see them except at these concerts. In any case, they were quiet (important at a clavichord concert) and seemed interested.

Disclaimer: Judith Conrad is my sister.

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