Well, Chiesa's Magister is not happy.
...Benedict XVI is also a pope of recognized musical competency, even more so than his holy predecessor. On music in general and on sacred music, he has said and written memorable and brilliant things.
But unlike with Pius X, the current pope's words have not been backed up with actions.
Instead of reviving it, Benedict XVI has let slide what was the musical glory of the pontifical liturgies: the choir of the Sistine Chapel. When the choir was decapitated in 1997 with the ouster of its highly qualified conductor, Domenico Bartolucci, by pope Karol Wojtyla's directors of ceremonies, then-cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was the only high official in the curia who came to his defense.
As pope, in 2010, he made Bartolucci a cardinal. But never, up until today, has he received him in audience.
Dumping Bartolucci was a good move. B'ci was of the "stomp, scream, shout" school of singing. So far as I know, he was also the only practitioner from that school.
Magister, evidently now Bartolucci's scribe, then stamps around the room telling us that Bartolucci's successor is incompetent. Well, maybe. But the Sistine Choir is also incompetent--largely due to Bartolucci's stupidity. Pea/Pod.
This is interesting, too:
Last March 14, Archbishop Fernando Filoni, the substitute secretary of state at the time, had pledged in writing that the pope had "benevolently accepted the request for a pontifical audience and for an apostolic letter" on the occasion of the celebrations of the centenary.
On the invitation to the conference, in fact, the Institute also printed the announcement of the audience with the pope.
But then, a few days before the opening of the conference and with the invitations already sent, the prefecture of the pontifical household made it known that there would be no audience, nor any apostolic letter.
In their place, the pope would simply send a message, in the form of a letter to Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, prefect of the congregation for education and therefore the grand chancellor of the Institute.
A friend of mine who is acquainted with a number of folks in the church-music biz both here and abroad told me that Fr. Grau was------ehhhh-------not the best thing ever to happen to the Papal Institute. Maybe B-16 agrees.
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