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Rome Reports

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Beethoven’s Symphony Number 9 heard in the Vatican to the sound of bagpipes

Beethoven’s Symphony Number 9 was heard loud and clear in St. Peter’s Square, but to the sound of northern Spain’s most traditional instruments. 

That is how the Royal Bagpipe Band of Ourense honored its compatriot Faustino Míguez, founder of the Calasancian Institute of the Daughters of the Divine Shepherdess. Pope Francis canonized Míguez along with 34 other new saints on October 15. 

XOSÉ L. FOXO
Director, Royal Bagpipe Band of Ourense (Spain)
“It is very satisfying for us to bring our intangible culture, to bring the spirit of Galician music here to St. Peter’s Square in Rome. It is now the fifth time the Royal Bagpipe Band has come with our music. We dedicated a muñeira to Pope John Paul II, we dedicated a composition to Pope Benedict XVI, and now we dedicate another muñeira to Pope Francis.”

The energetic sounds of the bagpipes, drums and tambourines didn’t go unnoticed on their way through the Eternal City.  

Their music hasn’t only made its way to the Eternal City. The band has performed at Castel Gandolfo and also during papal visits to Santiago de Compostela. They have also played in St. Petersburg, Glasgow, China, throughout Latin America, and even in the traditional St. Patrick’s Day Parade in New York.