. . . eerie, unforgiving darkness

Thanks for the fascinating [“Exercising into history,” by Alfred S. Regnery, Sept. 7] story! It calls to mind too a favorite composition, Respighi’s Pines of Rome, and its closing piece, capturing the Roman Army’s return to the Eternal City, along Via Appia. The long version begins with the nightingale’s song, as the Army breaks camp in the eerie, unforgiving darkness, and the piece closes with the city’s trumpeters hailing the army’s return, against the backdrop of the rising sun. What’s incredible too is that he composed this 1924, though it plays like the score to a major motion picture; thanks, again. It was also a favorite of Lorin Maazel’s, with the Philadelphia Orchestra.

Ralph Masi

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