I have been looking for consoling music to listen to during this time of crisis.
Most music is too intense for me right now.
I find — and always have — the composer Alan Hovhaness’s “Ave Maria,” Opus 100, no. 1a, for women’s chorus and instrumental accompaniment, which was composed in 1955, to be a beautiful piece that is just right right now. “Ave Maria” is part of a three-part work of the composer entitled Triptych.
My father, Alan W. Smith, had a nodding acquaintance with Hovhaness when both were in their adolescence. He and Hovhaness grew up in the same town (Arlington, Massachusetts) and had the same piano teacher.
— Roger W. Smith