The mystery of the fifth sorrow is the crucifixion and death of Jesus Christ on the cross. The figural image of a cross emerges as the music unfolds. This cross is the cross of tropes: Quotations from Bach, Mozart, and the songs of children from around the world. The quotations, arranged, juxtaposed, and superimposed on each other, come from and recede into sections of originally composed music.
In order to focus an aural space into a figural image, the cross is suspended between temporally equidistant piano recitations of an Ave Maria plainchant melody. The division of this text into ten phrases represents the ten repetitions of the entire prayer as it appears in the Rosary. The work's inception is a line from the Gospel according to St. Matthew: "But Jesus said, 'Let the children come to me, and don't prevent them. For such is the kingdom of heaven'". (Matthew 19:14)
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