Daily Journal reports
Tonight Tupelo will witness the world premier of a piece of classical music celebrating the life of the late Pope John Paul II. According to Steven Byess, the piece, titled “Hymn” is a musical expression of the pope’s lifelong passion for humanitarianism and inter-religious dialogue. “He was one of the most influential figures of the 21st Century,” said Byess, musical director of the Tueplo Symphony Orchestra.
“Hymn” is the work of Polish composer Bartek Chajdecki, a friend of Byess’s who he said first showed him rough draft of the music four years ago as they were touring together in the U.S. Tonight’s performance will be one of two versions written originally in Polish and will be performed by orchestra and the 180 members of the Mississippi State University Chorus.
Byess said that Chjdecki, who is Jewish, was selected by the Polish government to compose the piece. “John Paul II did a lot to advance relations between Judaism and the Catholic Church and Chajedcki’s piece is a testament to that,” said Byess.
The concert, which will also feature two other pieces, will be 7:30 at the Tupelo Civic Auditorium. Tickets are $25 general admission, $10 for students. Call 842-8433