These days, Lady Fortune is Vanna White, a blond goddess we sometimes watch when were stoned. But back in Medieval times, Lady Fortune was a gnarly blind woman turning a wheel of stone. Times may have changed, but the theme remains the same in Carmina Burana. Written by Carl Orff in the 30s, the cantata ponders lifes fickle wheel of fortune, which turns joy into bitterness and hope to grief. The composition begins and ends with the movement O Fortuna, a bone-chilling, Latin-language showstopper used for epic effect in previews for movies ranging from A Clockwork Orange to Scooby-Doo. Carmina Burana is based on writings by the Goliards Twelfth Century European college students who wrote satirical poetry to lampoon the Catholic Church. Hear Seraphic Fire perform the 25-movement cantata at the Arsht Centers Knight Concert Hall.
Sat., Jan. 8, 8 p.m., 2011