Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Église Sainte-Marie-Madeleine: Belcanto's second concert venue in Paris on Independence Day at 4 pm

Belcanto directed by Mr. Bruce Koliha presents a special concert in the afternoon of July 4, 2014 at the wonderful Église Sainte-Marie-Madeleine (Church of St. Mary Magdalene or Madeleine Church) in Paris, which is a majestic work of art. It is a Roman Catholic church occupying a commanding position in the 8th arrondissement of Paris. The concert begins at 4 pm, but if you want to join the group for the rehearsal prior, you are welcome to do so.

The construction of the Church of St. Mary Magdalene began in 1806 by Pierre-Alexandre Vignon. It is built in the neo-classical style, was inspired by the Maison Carrée at Nimes, one of the best-preserved of all Roman temples,and is surrounded by 52 Corinthian columns embracing the church and each column reaches a height of 20 meters.
The building was intended as a monument to the glory of the Napoleon's Grande Armée. This commemorative role, however, was assumed instead by the Arc de Triomphe, and in 1816 the Madeleine was made a church by the restored Bourbon regime. Its interior, completed between 1828 and 1842 under the supervision of Jean-Jacques Huvé, was modeled on the Roman bath. After the fall of Napoleon, King Louis XVIII declared that the building would become a church and it was rededicated to Mary Magdalene.

Nowadays, the Madeleine Church has continued to be the church that the Parisian elite have flocked to for weddings and, alternatively, for funerals. One of the most memorable funerals was Chopin’s in 1849 when Mozart’s Requiem was sung.

What a lot of people do not know... There is a small restaurant in the basement of the church with an entrance on its flower market side. Here in the basement is La Foyer de la Madeleine open for lunch Monday to Friday, 11:45 am to 2:00 pm, except in August and the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

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