Concert project "366plus1: The church resounds 2012"
Photo: epd-bild/Michaela BegsteigerThe Reformation laid a foundation for the European music culture.Thousands will participate, when artists will bring a treasure of the Reformation to resonate in manifold traditions: their music. During the project "366 + 1 – the church resounds 2012", a concert will be held on each day in 2012 in a different location. Altogether there will be 366 performances, beginning on January 1st 2012 in Augsburg and ending on December 31st in Zittau. They are organised by the culture office of the Evangelical Church in Germany, in co-operation with the directors of music of the regional churches.
During all 366 days of the leap year 2012, a ribbon of concerts will follow the domino effect and run through the whole of Germany. The performances will be held in open churches and the project is part of the Luther Decade and its theme year "Reformation and Music".
The sound of a song on every single day in 2012
Through the co-operation of the musicians, both the church and society join together in bringing the historical and cultural treasure of the Reformation to life: its unique collection of songs and motets.
Day after day, and place after place, a resonating ribbon will run through the Federal Republic – in spring through the southern areas, in summer along the coasts of the North Sea and the Baltic Sea, around Reformation Day in Central Germany, and at Christmas in Saxony and the Erzgebirge. It is due to the mystery of Easter that 367 concerts will be held on 366 days: The special "+1" concert will happen during the Easter vigil, carrying the message of Easter into the world.
All styles and directions of music will be covered. Brass bands of small village churches perform next to professional ensembles, the organist of a rural parish plays after the youth choir of a large city. Quality and authenticity constitute the fusing point of a musical community, which will bring sound to the society all over Germany .
Drawing from the musical treasure of the Reformation
All regional churches with altogether 367 parishes participate in the project, which was initiated and will be co-organised by the culture office of the Evangelical Church in Germany. Central to the series of events are the core songs that have been chosen especially for 2012 from the treasury of the songs of the Reformation, with music from Johann Walter and Johann Sebastian Bach to Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Hugo Distler and Frank Schwemmer, and lyrics from Martin Luther and Paul Gerhardt to Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Stephan Krawczyk. These "guiding songs 2012" are the musical headlines for a week each, and can be heard during their respective week as choral works, brass band pieces, cross-over versions, organ improvisation, or in other forms. As a foundation, the "Chorbuch Reformation " (Choir Book Reformation) will be published by Bärenreiter (Kassel).
Another central element is the chronicle that travels through the country with the concerts. The different versions of the respective "guiding songs" are presented by the organiser of today's concert to the organiser of tomorrow's concert, thus creating an immediate connection during 366 + 1, like the passing of a relay baton. At the end, the voluminous chronicle will document the course of the concert project as it wandered through Germany during the whole year. At the same time, it will be a unique almanac of 366 + 1 musical arrangements from all federal states and regional churches.
The ribbon of sound runs through the whole of Germany
The course runs through all regional churches and federal states. Beginning on each Sunday, there are weekly routes, including cities as well as villages. Out of small geographical areas, a ribbon of sound will grow through the whole of Germany.
Some examples for the highlights of the year are the "Gospelkirchentag" ("Gospel Church Congress") in Dortmund (June 1st until 3rd, 2012), and "Dreiklang" ("Triad"), the choir festival of the Northern Church in Greifswald, where many works will have their first performance (August 24th until 26th, 2012). In addition, conferences on "Reformation and Music" will assess different topics and the relationship between words and sounds in the music of today: in Wittenberg, "Protestantism and Music ("January 20th until 22nd, 2012), and in Eisenach, "Bach as a Lutheran" (February 24th until 28th, 2012).