A tribute to Paris

In the wise words of Danish author Hans Christian Andersen, “Where words fail, music speaks.”

(Photo by Charles Schmitz)

(Photo by Charles Schmitz)

After the tragic terrorists attacks in Paris on Nov. 13, which killed 129 and wounded 352 others, Barbara Harbach, Curators’ Professor of Music at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, wanted to express her sorrow through her music.

Harbach collaborated with Charles Schmitz, dean emeritus of the College of Education at UMSL, and his wife, Liz.

“We are all touched by the senseless acts of violence that occurred in Paris, as well as other places,” Harbach said. “We wanted to create a small oasis of beauty and serenity where our outpouring of love may bring solace and hope to others.

Using Harbach’s composition, “In Memoriam: Turn Round, O My Soul, To Your Rest” and a collection of photos taken by Charles Schmitz in Paris over the last several years, Liz composed a video tribute.

“In Memoriam: Turn Round, O My Soul, To Your Rest” was recorded by the London Philharmonic Orchestra with David Angus conducting and released by MSR Classics as “Music of Barbara Harbach, Music for Strings, MS 1258, Volume 7” in 2011.

“It’s a eulogy and elegy for All Souls Day, remembering the friends and loves that have passed through our lives,” she said. “Strings evoke the feelings that words cannot express – sadness, beauty, mournfulness, grief, sorrow and nobleness. The harshness of grief is portrayed by the dissonance near the end of the middle section with loud, tension and grief-stricken chords.”

Charles and Liz Schmitz have spent the last several years studying successful marriages around the world and publishing various books and online post about their findings.

Charles has taken more than 50,000 photos during the Schmitzes’ travels.

“The collections of photos included in this tribute – ‘Paris: An American Tribute to the Fallen French’ – were taken during four different trips to Paris in the past six years,” he said. “Once we selected the photos, we then determined which piece of music best matched the photos and the concept we were trying to portray. Like many, we have friends in Paris and across France and wanted to keep those who died, those who were injured, and the French people in general in your thoughts and prayers.”



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