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Holy Father's address at the close of the Concert
sponsored by the Lucchini Foundation

12 September 1999

At the end of this stirring musical evening, I am pleased to extend a cordial greeting to you, Ladies and Gentlemen, who have taken part in the concert organized by the Lucchini Foundation of Brescia. I first of all greet the President, Dr Luigi Lucchini, and thank him for his courteous remarks a few moments ago.
I also express my appreciation to the young pianist, Daniele Alberti, who played with masterly and impassioned skill.
For the 150th anniversary of the death of the Polish composer and pianist Fryderyk Chopin, your Foundation has organized a series of concerts in places which were significant in the life of that great musician.
I am grateful to the organizers for deciding to hold the first of these programmes here in Castel Gandolfo. I offer you my best wishes that your praiseworthy Foundation's many activities can help to spread those human and spiritual values which form the indispensable basis for the moral, civil and economic progress of the whole community.

2. From Chopin, considered one of the greatest musicians of European Romanticism, we heard several Nocturnes, which reveal the clear, pulsating inner sensitivity of the great master, who knew how to withdraw from the outside world to immerse himself in the human heart, portraying its most subtle, hidden features in extraordinarily expressive musical language. Then in the Fantaisie-Impromptu in C Sharp Minor and the Waltzes, we were able to admire the composer's original inspiration and poetic talent. Finally, we were offered several Polonaises:  musical compositions in which Chopin evoked motifs he had heard as a child, recalling his distant yet unforgettable homeland.
While listening to Daniele Alberti's masterly performance, I was thinking of how this concert also bears significant witness to that cultural and spiritual unity of Europe to which the Christian tradition has made an essential contribution over the centuries and still does so today.
In again expressing, also on behalf of everyone here, my deep gratitude to the evening's organizers and to our talented pianist, I offer the heartfelt wish that the initiatives taken by the Lucchini Foundation on the anniverary of Chopin's death will be an outstanding opportunity to foster understanding among individuals and peoples.

With these sentiments, I invoke the Lord's protection upon everyone here and upon their families, as I cordially impart to all my Apostolic Blessing.

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