Music to soothe the soul: Ludovico Einaudi’s ‘Elegy for the Arctic’

The World
A man plays the grand piano on a floating platform in front of a glacier.

Editor’s Note: This composition aired April 10, 2020, in a special edition of The World on faith in the time of the coronavirus

Composer and Italian classical piano superstar Ludovico Einaudi teamed up with Greenpeace for a concert in the Arctic Circle in June 2016 in support of a campaign for a marine sanctuary in the North Pole’s international waters and to raise awareness about melting glaciers and rising sea levels.

Einaudi performed “Elegy for the Arctic,” his own composition, on a floating platform in the Arctic Ocean in front of the Wahlenbergbreen glacier in Svalbard, an archipelago in Norway.

Einaudi’s performance is accompanied by the sound of chunks of the glacier calving off and falling into the sea. 

The acclaimed Italian artist, famous for composing scores for films and television series, played the grand piano ahead of a meeting of the Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the North-East Atlantic (OSPAR) in Tenerife, Spain, which discussed the first protected area in Arctic international waters. OSPAR is a cooperation mechanism among 15 European countries to protect the marine environment in the region.

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