The Passing of Sir John Tavener


Musician John Tavener died this week (on November 12, 2013).  He had suffered ill health much of his life. Tavener was a Grammy winning composer of classical and spiritual music who owes some of his popularity to the Beatles. His Song for Athene was played at Princess Diana’s funeral.

Tavener was deeply religious, and in a BBC interview he commented that writing music was, in a sense, “channeling God.”  Tavener felt that he could experience the divine in poetry, literature and music. According to the Washington Post:

“Sir John’s later, better-known works flowed from his conversion to Orthodox Christianity and his collaboration with Mother ­Thekla, a Russian emigre and Orthodox nun to whom he turned for support after his mother died in 1985.”

Fellow composer John Rutter, quoted by the BBC, said of Tavener:

“He could bring an audience to a deep silence which is a very rare gift. He believed that music was for everybody and was a prayer.”

The planets most closely associated with music are Venus and Neptune.  Not surprisingly, Tavener has Neptune in Libra (ruled by Venus) trine his Sun and square to Venus. Neptune is associated with spirituality and forms part of a remarkable “kite pattern” involving the Sun, Uranus, Mars, the North Lunar Node, and Pluto.  Transiting Saturn in Scorpio this year placed tremendous stress on the tight Sun/Pluto opposition in his natal chart.

Sir John Tavener birth chart.  TIME UNKNOWN. Sun sign houses.  Noon positions of planets.

Sir John Tavener birth chart. TIME UNKNOWN. Sun sign houses. Noon positions of planets.

Here is what Halloran software has to say about the kite pattern:

“With Pluto as a Kite pattern focus planet, you have a powerful intensity and can experience some dramatic changes in your life. You may know from an early age what will be your career. Your career could be versatile and wide-ranging. You have keen judgment and are willing to take risks. You could work as a producer, especially if Jupiter and Saturn are strong. You become conscious of how the world operates at a young age. Certain features of your career and/or life choices may violate social custom. Still, it is a mistake for you to play it safe, as doing so will only cause your career to stagnate. Your success will be in proportion to the extent to which you seek truth, not popularity. You face life fearlessly. A woman with this pattern will display exceptional courage and spirit. Big events could change your life and expand your awareness. When faced with life path choices, you will prefer the direction that leads to personal growth.”

Interestingly, another famous musician with a kite pattern having Pluto as a focus is the late Kurt Cobain, who also has a Pluto/Uranus conjunction on his ASC.  Here is Cobain’s chart with Whole Sign Houses:

Kurt Cobain natal chart. Whole Sign Houses.  Born at 7:20 PM.

Kurt Cobain natal chart. Whole Sign Houses. Born at 7:20 PM.

Kurt Cobain committed suicide by gunshot to the head on April 5, 1994.  At that time transiting Mercury and Mars were conjunct and in partile oppositition to his natal Uranus in Virgo.

About Anthony Louis

Author of books about astrology and tarot, including TAROT PLAIN AND SIMPLE, HORARY ASTROLOGY, and THE ART OF FORECASTING WITH SOLAR RETURNS.
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