october, 2020

30oct7:00 pm8:00 pmReflection - Online Stream - Messiaen's Quartet for the end of timeQuartet for the End of Time - Online Stream

Event Details



Join us for the online stream event of Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time from the iconic St Paul’s Cathedral. This is an ONLINE video only of the recording of a concert – no live concert.

Released a week after the live performance of Messiaen’s ‘Quartet for the End of Time’ presented by City Music Foundation in the UK’s most iconic building St Paul’s Cathedral. Offering Londoners an opportunity for contemplation and reflection as we learn to live with the devastating effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.


Musicians – all City Music Foundation Artists:

Emily Sun, violin

Ariana Kashefi, cello

Joseph Shiner, clarinet

Alexander Soares, piano

Tickets are free, with encouragement to donate towards the costs of the concert, and you will be sent the video link via email on the day of the video release – Friday 30th October. Please check your email junk folder if you haven’t received it.



Olivier Messiaen

Quartet for the End of Time

I: Liturgie de cristal (Crystal liturgy)

II: Vocalise pour l’Ange qui annonce le fin du Temps (Song without words for the Angel who announces the end of Time)

III: Abîme des oiseaux (Abyss of the birds)

IV: Intermède (Interlude)

V: Louange à l’Eternité de Jésus (Praise to the Eternity of Jesus)

VI: Danse de la fureur, pour les sept trompettes (Dance of fury, for the seven trumpets)

VII: Fouillis d’arcs-en-ciel, pour l’Ange qui annonce la fin du Temps (Cluster of rainbows, for the Angel who announces the end of Time)

VIII: Louange à l’Immortalité de Jésus (Praise to the Immortality of Jesus)


Those who are able to attend this event will hear and see a performance one of the great works of the 20th century – a meditation on transcendence which speaks with uncompromising honesty and piercing beauty to both listeners and performers.

Messiaen wrote the piece whilst in a prisoner of war camp. It was first performed there in January 1941 with some of his fellow prisoners, a clarinettist, a violinist, and a cellist and on a battered piano. Messiaen wrote the music as he struggled to live in the regime of the camp, and to reconcile that experience with his profound faith. For him it also represented an escape from history, a leap into the future and into paradise. He sought paradise not only in an afterlife, but in the serendipities of day to day living.

Ultimately Quartet for the End of Time describes the rebirth of an ordinary soul through the experience of extraordinary emotion, and as such it has a role to play as we start to emerge from the pandemic.


St Paul’s Remember Me

It is intended that the Remember Me site will become a physical memorial at the Cathedral. There are approved designs for a new inner portico in the North transept and, subject to funding, this will serve as a fitting memorial for all who have died as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Very Revd David Ison, Dean of St Paul’s, said: “’For centuries, St Paul’s Cathedral has been a place to remember the personal and national impact of great tragedies, from the losses of war to the devastation of the Grenfell Tower fire. We have heard so many sad stories of those affected by the pandemic, and all our thoughts and prayers are with them. Every person is valued and worthy of remembrance.

“We are all experiencing the devastating impacts of COVID-19 across the country and beyond. Remember Me is an opportunity to mourn every person we have lost to the effects of this terrible disease, an encouragement to offer compassion and support to those left behind, and an ongoing recognition of the impact of the pandemic on the UK.”

The Remember Me project could not have been achieved without the generous sponsorship of The Dorfman Foundation. St Paul’s Cathedral would also like to give special thanks to Sir Lloyd Dorfman for his leadership and guidance in the realisation of this project along with James Olley for his wise counsel and dedication to St Paul’s. Our deepest gratitude goes out to all of the companies who have given their time, incredible expertise and pro-bono support so generously.


(Friday) 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

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