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Music, Masterworks, and Mourning

Friday, November 13th 12 p.m. via Crowdcast

About the Event

The New Yorker calls Philip Kennicott’s book Counterpoint: A Memoir of Bach and Mourning “lyrical and haunting.” Just like Bach’s challenging Goldberg Variations, whose opposing melodies alternate until they merge into one rich harmony, Kennicott’s memoir alternates between the story of his turbulent relationship with his mother, and his seven year journey to master the Variations on piano. While his mother was dying from cancer, Kennicott began to listen to Bach’s music obsessively, finding that it enabled him to experience her death while removing himself from it. By learning the composer’s masterwork, Kennicott finds he is able to transcend grief. The Washington Post calls Counterpoint “Immensely moving….With gorgeous prose and granular inspection, Kennicott has created a subtle and profound portrait of love, loss and the human condition.” Kennicott is a Pulitzer Prize-winning senior art and architecture critic for the Post. Sponsored by the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. 

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Philip Kennicott

About Philip Kennicott

Philip Kennicott, the senior art and architecture critic of the Washington Post and a former contributing editor for the New Republic, won the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism in 2013. He lives in Washington, DC.

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