The Birth, Life and Death of Christ for Chamber Orchestra

By Barbara Harbach

1. Arrival in Bethlehem – Nativity and Arrival of the Magi – The Sleep of Jesus
2. The Samaritan – The Miracle of Jairus’ Daughter
3. Mary Magdalene Washes the Feet of Jesus – Palm Sunday
4. The Last Supper
5. The Olive Garden – The Night Watch – Judas’s Betrayal
6. Jesus Before Caiaphas – The Denial of St. Peter
7. Jesus Before Pontius Pilate
8. The Torment – Ecce Homo (Behold the Man) – Bearing of the Cross – Jesus Falls for the First Time
9. Saint Veronica – Climbing Golgotha
10. The Crucifixion – The Agony – Descending from the Cross
11. Committed to the Tomb – The Resurrection

Published: 2016
Catalogue Number: MS 1544
1. Arrival in Bethlehem - Excerpt from The Birth, Life and Death of Christ for Chamber Orchestra
3. Mary Magdalene Washes the Feet of Jesus – Palm Sunday - Excerpt from The Birth, Life and Death of Christ for Chamber Orchestra
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H972 Full Score $49.00
H972B Score and Parts $139.00

La Naissance, La Vie et La Mort du Christ (The Birth, Life and Death of Christ) is a 33-minute silent film from 1906 comprised of twenty-five scenes or tableaux, directed by the trail-blazing French filmmaker Alice Guy (1873-1968). The very first woman filmmaker, Guy was one of few individual artists to have exerted such a profound influence on the evolution of cinema. Not simply a “woman filmmaker”, she is an unqualified giant of the medium whose work is as important as that of the Lumière Brothers, Georges Méliès and Edwin S. Porter in moving cinema from an optical illusion to a storytelling medium to an art form. This religious film, the very first of its kind and the one for which she is best known, is her crowning achievement. Film International writes: “By the standards of the period, ‘La Vie du Christ’ was both ambitious and lavish in production, as well as epic in running time, in an era in which most films lasted only a few minutes.” Harbach has grouped the twenty-five scenes into eleven movements, where each movement retains the same emotional impact whether being a standalone scene, or a combination of several. This work was premiered 16 November 2014 at the St. Louis Art Museum under the auspices of the St. Louis International Film Festival and sponsored by the French-language channel TV5MONDE. The event was co-presented by the University of Missouri-St. Louis. The viewing of the 1906 film La Naissance, La Vie et La Mort du Christ was accompanied by Harbach’s piece, performed by thirteen musicians and conductor.

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Orchestral