Domenico Scarlatti married beauty with humbleness

Kyrie eleison! © Charles Thibo

Kyrie eleison – Lord, have mercy. It doesn’t matter whether we are Muslims, Jews or Christians, the one and almighty God is the one who will judge us and whose mercy we implore when we have trespassed the divine laws. And even if you do not believe in any god, you most likely acknowledge the existence of man-made laws and, when in court, you will hope for a lenient judge.

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Musical sunbeams cutting through the grey fog

Sunbeams cutting through the winter fog. © Charles Thibo

Snow has become a rare commodity in Luxembourg, and it is far more likely to snow in January or February than in December. White Christmas is a myth! Climate change is not helping to improve this situation: Winter is like a long series of grey, wet days, prone to trigger depressive ideas and bad temper. That’s why I cherish every single winter day with a little sunshine. I compare it to a promise, made by nature to mankind: Spring will come!

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Serenity at sunrise

Dawn. © Charles Thibo

On my way to work I am driving mainly through rural areas until I reach the outskirt of Luxembourg city and the first traffic jam. Mid-October we had fair weather for several days and I crossed the countryside shortly before sunrise. Nautical twilight is the technical term, the sun is between 6 and 12 degrees below the horizon. It bathes the landscape in a mesmerizing bluish light, and on several occasions I caught myself thinking: “How beautiful this is! How lucky I am to see this.” Such a simple joy: nature, the sky veering from black to blue and orange, the shadows of the trees against the light… Such a serenity! Though I knew I would be late for work, I stopped on more than one day to shoot a few pictures. Work will not run away, these magical moments however… Better be quick!

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“Make me a bearer of the death of Christ”

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The Holy Virgin at the cross. © Charles Thibo

History is not without remarkable coincidences. In the year 1685, three great Baroque composers were born: Johann Sebastian Bach in the German town of Eisenach, Georg Friedrich Händel in Halle, some 140 kilometres north-east of Eisenach, and Domenico Scarlatti in Naples, Italy. Domenico Scarlatti was the sixth child of Alessandro Scarlatti, composer of a wonderful “Salve Regina” and the oratorio “O di Betlemme altera”. Tale padre, tale figlio – the French musicologist Adelaïde de Place believes that the son inherited the talent from his father with the additional benefit of genius.

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