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Vézelay Travel Guide: 58 reviews and 198 photos

Colline Eternelle


About 10 years ago famous Russian cellist and conductor Mstislav Rostropovich played Bach's suites for unaccompanied cello in the church of Madeleine at Vezelay.

"I had always thought that if I were to record Bach, it would have to be in a beautiful church. Not because it's religious music: for me the important thing was to play Bach in an empty room and in a place that would encourage concentration and spirituality. A lot goes on in an empty church. Subconsciously, I was looking for a church that would meet my criteria, and until then I hadn't found one. Then I visited the restaurant of a noted chef, Marc Meneau, in Vezelay. My wife and I had a feast. We were due to leave on the Monday morning, but Marc said to me: "You mustn't leave the area until you've seen this church I want to show you." I told him that I was in a hurry, that I didn't have a minute to spare. He insisted that I should see it that very day. When I entered the church of LB Madeleine I crossed myself from the sheer joy of discovering it. And I began preparing to record there."

  • Last visit to Vézelay: Jul 2004
  • Intro Updated Nov 1, 2005
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