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Trinity Episcopal Church Hosting J.S. Bach Birthday Bash Concert

The J.S. Bach Birthday Bash concert honors the legacy of Johann Sebastian Bach (March 21, 1685-July 28, 1750). The concert is set for 3:30 p.m. Sunday, March 10.

The Santa Barbara Chapter of the American Guild of Organists co-sponsors the festivities with Trinity Episcopal Church, 1500 State St. in Santa Barbara.

The community is cordially invited to commemorate the inspirational life and music of Bach at the admission-free birthday concert celebration.

The concert will feature music for organ, piano and instruments by the Bach family. Celebrated members of the Santa Barbara Chapter of the American Guild of Organists offer moving renditions of the rich heritage of soaring sounds spanning centuries of musical development.

Today, Bach’s music is heard around the world. Albert Schweitzer explains in his biography of the composer, that Bach’s work was the culmination of an era: “All the artistic endeavors, desires, creations, aspirations, and errors of his own and of previous generations are concentrated and worked out to their conclusion in him.”

Robert Schumann advised musicians to treat Bach’s works as their daily bread. Beethoven copied it by hand in an attempt to work loose its secrets. Goethe, hearing Bach’s music for the first time, said, “It is as if the eternal harmony were conversing within itself, as it may have done in the bosom of God just before the creation of the world.”

Now Bach is considered one of the greatest composers of all time. His 21 children called him “Old Fogey,” and his contemporaries often found him old-fashioned and boring.

The American Guild of Organists, Santa Barbara Chapter, co-sponsors this year’s event. The Guild is the international professional association of musicians, serving the organ and choral fields. The organization was founded in 1896 and counts 26,000 members throughout the United States, Canada and the world.

The Santa Barbara chapter was chartered in 1946. Charles Talmadge serves as dean of the chapter. Members of the Guild offer opportunities for the community hear music performed on some of the unique and historic instruments located in the Santa Barbara area.

The community is welcome to the J. S. Bach Birthday Bash Concert on March 10. For more information, call 805.965.7419 or 805.687.0189.

— David Gell is the minister of organ and music outreach for Trinity Episcopal Church.

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