Category: World War 2

Rafael Schäcter and the “Defiant Requiem”

During World War II the Jewish inmates of the Terezin Concentration Camp (sometimes known as Theresienstadt) under the Nazis found a nonviolent way to resist, to claim their own identity and find a place of freedom amid the horrors of the Holocaust. The key was music. The initiator was Rafael Schäcter, a Czech Jewish composer… Read more »

Benjamin Britten’s “War Requiem”

“My subject is War, and the pity of War.  The Poetry is in the pity…All a poet can do today is warn.”  These words by Wilfred Owen are inscribed on the title page of British composer Benjamin Britten’s “War Requiem.”  Britten combined the Latin text of the Requiem Mass with nine poems of the World… Read more »

Masao Ohki (1901-1971)

Japanese composer Masao Ohki was profoundly moved by The Hiroshima Panels painted by Iri and Toshi Maruki (See the article about the Marukis in our Peace Art Festival).  Inspired by their first six panels which had been completed by 1953 he composed his Fifth Symphony.  The six movements of the symphony follow the themes of the six… Read more »

Ira Maruki (1901-1995) and Toshi Maruki (1912-2000)

The Maruki Gallery is a small art gallery outside of Tokyo. Iri and Toshi Maruki were a married couple, both artists. The grounds of the gallery include both their home and an exhibition of their work. The major exhibit is a collection of fifteen wall-sized paintings on folding screens of the experiences of those in… Read more »

TITUS BRANDSMA (1881-1942)

Titus Brandsma, born in 1881 and named Anno Sjoerd, was a Dutch Carmelite priest who also worked as a university professor and a journalist. When he joined the Carmelites in 1898 he took a new name according to Carmelite tradition, Titus, his father’s name and the name of the author of a New Testament epistle…. Read more »