Pilgrimage concert tour to the medieval churches of Finland (2015-2017)
Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750): Suites, Sonatas and Partitas BWV 1001-1012
(Sonatas and Partitas are transcribed from the violin solo works)
Markku Luolajan-Mikkola, Baroque cello
“My pilgrimage does not follow an exact historical model but is done in the spirit of the old tradition of pilgrimages. During the Middle Ages, every church was a possible goal for a pilgrimage. My concert tour will reach the remaining 72 medieval churches of Finland, which are still in use and not in ruins. I am going to play at least one concert in each of them, reaching nearly 100 concerts. Pilgrimage is traditionally done by foot, but in my case, I will approach this long peregrination by playing all the solo violin and cello works by Johann Sebastian Bach.
The year 2015 marks the anniversary of 330 years since Bach was born, and Pope Franciscus has declared the year 2016 to be the year of an Extraordinary Jubilee and expressed a very strong point of view about pilgrimage: “Life is a peregrination, and the human being is a viator, a pilgrim, who is taking his path towards his goal.” The year 2017 is the anniversary of the Reformation. The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland has considered this concert tour to be part of its official program. The tour is funded by the Finnish Cultural Foundation.
The tradition of pilgrimage includes learning, recreation, spirituality, visiting holy places, and introspection. These are my aims during my three-year trip, and I am inviting the listeners of the concerts to walk by my side during this pilgrimage.”
© Markku Luolajan-Mikkola (2015)