PSALM is about endings and beginnings and so always concerned with the fundamentals of life. Spring is a special time of year, when we lay aside our thick winter coats, the snow melts and nature reawakens. At this time of powerful change, we consider the big questions in life. In Psalm 2023 in 7 productions: What is truth?


April 01 - 10 in Graz

Psalm 2023


“For this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth”. These were Jesus of Nazareth’s words to the Roman governor Pontius Pilate at his trial. The Roman answered with the sceptical question, “What is truth?” This is the central question in Arvo Pärt’s “St John Passion” and today it is more relevant than ever. What truth can we trust in these times of fake news and the unrestrained manipulation of opinions? And how do those people fare who bear witness to the truth today: the journalists who go to prison for the truth; the women who cry freedom in the face of the masculine “truth” of archaic societies; the young people who no longer believe what they are being sold as the truth about the future of the planet? They are all ready to fight for the truth. 

As are the musicians of Psalm 2023. Fazıl Say, Turkish pianist und civil rights activist, plays Bach’s Goldberg Variations as a reflection of a higher truth. With her joik singing, Ulla Pirttijärvi gives her people, the Sami, a voice The Vienna Clarinet Connection tells us how Mozart wanted to understand and improve the world as a Freemason. On Palm Thursday the chalice of the Last Supper is contrasted with the joyful truth of wine - a wine tour through the Alps. On Good Friday the stirring music of Arvo Pärt’s “St John Passion” recalls the arbitrariness of Jesus of Nazareth’s trial. On Easter Monday Michael Hell and four wonderful singers transport us to Baroque Rome for the young Handel’s alluring portrayal of Truth as the daughter of Time. What is truth? The answers to this question are endlessly complex. And in the fairy tale “The Emperor’s New Clothes”, it is a child that eventually tells the truth, after all the adults have lied.

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