Into Great Silence – film concert

Saturday, June 10 2023 | 21:30 -00:15 u | St. John’s Cathedral, ‘s Hertogenbosch (NL) | 25,00 | buy tickets

Watching a film in the high choir of St. John’s Cathedral, with only candlelight: you only get to experience that once. As part of the Liturgy of the Hours during the Dutch Gregorian Festival, Cappella Pratensis provides the closing of the day: the Matins. Not as a regular concert, but subtly intertwined with the monumental film Into Great Silence.

Into Great Silence is a very precise, partially silent meditation on monastic life in its purest form. No music, except for the chants in the monastery, no interviews, no commentary. The passing of time, the seasons and the recurring elements of the day, of prayer. A film that almost becomes a monastery, instead of depicting one. A film by Philip Gröning about consciousness, absolute presence, about men who have dedicated their lives to God in the purest form.

Into Great Silence is the first ever film about life in La Grande Chartreuse, the settlement of the legendary Carthusian Order in the French Alps. The monks live according to age-old rules and rituals. The Carthusian Order is the most closed order of the Roman Catholic Church and is almost completely hidden from the outside world. The fact that Philip Gröning has been given permission to enter this monastery as an outsider and especially as a film-maker can be called unique. Before Into Great Silence, no filming has ever been done in La Grande Chartreuse and the last photos taken there date from the 1960s.

Cappella Pratensis, this time led by Tim Braithwaite, takes on the challenge of providing this unique film document with live music: Gregorian chant with polyphonic improvisations at set times. The ensemble will sing chant from the Carthusians, and also from unique Brabant heritage: the magnificent 15th-century Johannes van Deventer gradual from the monastery of St. Agatha.

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