Thursday, May 2, 2013

Music in the Rafters - Vancouver Views

Christ Church Cathedral, shown below, is the place where we heard music beneath the rafters of a Heritage building. Its architecture, warm wooden interior and stained glass windows form a peaceful oasis in the downtown core. The Georgia Street side of the church sits across the street from the Hotel Vancouver.

Christ Church Cathedral, Vancouver by DG Hudson

On April 26, the West Coast Symphony Orchestra performed in this beautiful church for two hours. The Hector Berlioz, 'Symphonie Fantastique' was the main piece. It's a story that's autobiographical and which helped to establish Berlioz's reputation. It tells the tale of unrequitted love, and the suffering of the artist.

Christ Church Side Garden facing Burrard St, by DG Hudson

Included in this program was a group of guest artist/musicians, the Music Progressive Quartet, from Skopje, Macedonia. They are members of the National Macedonian Philharmonic Orchestra, and their work was presented at the beginning of the concert. They have a fresh jazz approach to traditional folk songs of Macedonia.


About the Cathedral. . .

Dedicated in 1895, Christ Church Cathedral was built in the Gothic Style with a ceiling made of cedar planking and ceiling beams and floor constructed out of old growth Douglas fir. Maybe that's why it reminds me of a tall ship's interior cabins. The warm wood and structural design lend an elegance to the interior of the church.

Christ Church Cathedral Rafters, Vancouver by DG Hudson


The West Coast Symphony Orchestra, with Principal Conductor Bujar Llapaj, is a community orchestra of exceptional quality. They bring talented performers and new musical programs of classical works for audiences in the Vancouver area, and the Lower Mainland. Concerts that we've attended have been about 2 hours long.

In the image below, you can see the central stained glass windows and the arched ceiling rafters of Christ Church Cathedral.

West Coast Symphony-Tuning, by DG Hudson

Seeing the interior of this church brought to mind the exterior of Notre Dame in Paris, it has the same architectural style and similar design flourishes. I'm glad the church was saved from being replaced by a downtown condo! Let's continue to keep these survivors from earlier times to show us what craftmanship looked like, when life moved at a slower pace.

Gothic ceiling of Christ Church Cathedral, by DG Hudson

Live music with great acoustics can be enjoyed on a budget, if you know where to look. In this case, it's a symphony but other musical acts perform in Kitsilano and other areas in the city. Hope you enjoyed this little side trip into a piece of Vancouver.

Next on the cultural event horizon: Vancouver Jazz Festival in June.


Do you like live orchestral music? Any opportunities in your area to attend these type of events? Do you like the older churches with beautiful ceilings like this one?
Please share in the comments and thanks for stopping by.


Christ Church Cathedral-Vancouver West Coast Symphony (offers pay-by-donation events to sponsor music for everyone) Check website for details.