Pope’s Playlist

“Parsifal, the hero’s path to compassion and understanding can be a metaphor for the church. ”

This is another post with more than a whiff of the ecclesiastical.
Pope Francis is the second Pope in recent times with an interest in classical music (see below).
Unfortunately His Holiness doesn’t mention whether he listens to smaller scale works than Wagner’s Ring or the Bach St.Matthew Passion, although I’m sure he would appreciate Barrios’ La Catedral.
In fact, when he visited Brazil, he did play the guitar, more than in a metaphorical way – a papal aide says “In 2007, Benedict came and played the standard classical nocturne that he was famous for, and his devotees loved it. Francis came and played the guitar in his very accessible style and the crowds went wild,” We have to remember the Holy Father is Argentinian, although i suspect Piazzolla isn’t one of the composers he plays.

I once played at the Taizé community in France, and Frère Roger, the refugee helper turned head monk seemed pretty impressed by “Campanas de Alba” played at 8.00am over the tannoy in a circus tent, which was the only structure large enough to hold all the peace workers and refugee priests together with thousands of young people, bent on conflict resolution.
Read more about Pope Francis’s musical tastes here
His Favourite films, apparently, are Fellini’s “La Strada” and “Rome”. Great music there, by Nino Rota


Pope Benedict XVI was well known as a pianist and duettist with his brother and hailed Chopin’s “important contribution to culture” . “The music of this famous Polish composer, who made an important contribution to European and world culture, brings those listening to him closer to God and helps discover the depth of the human spirit,” Benedict told his weekly papal audience.

“We celebrate today the bicentennial of his birth and the Chopin year is currently taking place” said the pope, who is said to be an accomplished pianist himself.

Pope Benedict playing Schubert!

And here he is pretending to play a chocolate piano!

Stephen Hough has this to say about Pope Benedict.