Sunday, November 25, 2012

Advent I: Sunday, 2 December 2012

  • Organ Prelude: Nun komm der heiden Heiland – J.S. Bach
Come now, Saviour of the Gentiles,
recognised as the child of the Virgin,
so that all the world is amazed
God ordained such a birth for him.
  • Opening Hymn 89 “O come, O come, Emmanuel” 
  • Psalm 25: 1-9 
  • Anthem: “People, look east” – French carol arr. By Martin Shaw 
  • Offertory Hymn 114 “Lo, he comes with clouds descending” 
  • Communion Hymn 92 “O day of God, draw nigh” 
  • Final Hymn 97 “Jesus came, the heavens adoring” 
  • Organ Postlude: Wachet auf! (Sleepers, wake!) – J.S. Bach

Christ the King - Sunday, 25 November 2012

  • Organ Prelude: Capriccio - Johann Jacob Froberger 
  • Opening Hymn 378 “Crown him with many crowns” 
  • Service Music: David Hurd
  • Anthem: O Sing Joyfully – Adrian Batten 
  • Offertory Hymn 375 “At the name of Jesus” 
  • Communion Hymn 48 “Let all mortal flesh keep silence” 
  • Final Hymn 379 “Rejoice, the Lord is King” 
  • Organ Postlude: Exultate – June Dixon

Music Notes

Johann Jakob Froberger (1616 – 1667) was a German Baroque composer, keyboard virtuoso, and organist. He was among the most famous composers of the era and influenced practically every major composer in Europe by developing the genre of keyboard suite and contributing greatly to the exchange of musical traditions through his many travels. A cappriccio is defined as a lively piece of music, short and free in form, like an improvisation.

Adrian Batten (c. 1591 – c. 1637) was an English organist and Anglican church composer. He was active during an important period of English church music, between the Reformation and the Civil War in the 1640s. During this period the liturgical music of the first generations of Anglicans began to diverge significantly from music on the European continent. Although by no means comparable with the work of the greatest of his contemporary English church musicians (William Byrd and Orlando Gibbons, for example), Batten's music possesses charms of its own. His music has been described as follows: “ .... there is one virtue in Batten's sacred music which was possessed by only a few composers, and that is his constant endeavour to think of music as the servant of divine worship and not as the central figure of that service.”

June Nixon is one of Australia’s best known musicians – an organist, choir trainer and composer. She was appointed organist of St. Paul’s Cathedral in Melbourne in 1973, and for her long and distinguished service to church music she was awarded an honorary doctorate by the Archbishop of Canterbury in 1999.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Pentecost 25 - Sunday 18 November 2012

  • Organ Prelude: 1. Prélude à l’Introït - 3. Élévation - 4. Communion - Charles Tournemire (1870-1939) (played by Peter Dunphy) 
  • Opening Hymn 434 “The love of Jesus calls us” Service Music: John Merbecke 
  • Solo: TBA (Virginia Wright, mezzo-soprano) 
  • Offertory Hymn 529 “God, my hope on you is founded” 
  • Communion Hymn 49 “Draw nigh and take” 
  • Final Hymn 491 “The head that once was crowned with thorns” 
  • Organ Postlude: The Prince of Denmark’s March – Jeremiah Clarke
Music Notes
Born at Bordeaux, France, Charles Tournemire served as the organiste titulaire at the Basilique Ste-Clotilde, Paris from 1898 to 1939. Gregorian chant exerted a substantial influence on Tournemire’s compositional output, most notably L’Orgue Mystique, a collection of 51 five-movement Offices or suites. Each of these Offices contains five pieces to be used for the five moments at which, before Vatican II, the liturgical organist intervened in the mass: namely, Introit, Offertory, Elevation, Communion, and Recessional. The first four pieces are untitled and brief so they can be inserted during the mass without hindering its progress. L’Orgue Mystique, composed between 1927 and 1932, is arranged by liturgical seasons: Christmas, Easter and Pentecost including principal feast days.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Pentecost 24 – Remembrance Day - Sunday 11 November, 2012

  • Organ Prelude: Sursum corda – John Ireland 
  • Opening Hymn 528 “O God, our help in ages past” 
  • O Canada God Save the Queen 
  • Service Music: David Hurd 
  • Psalm 127 (Tone II.1) 
  • Anthem: “Greater Love hath no man” – John Ireland
Many waters cannot quench love,
neither can the floods drown it. Love is strong as death.
Greater love hath no man than this,
that a man lay down his life for his friends.
Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree,
That we,being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness.
Ye are washed, ye are sanctified,
ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus.
Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation;
That ye should show forth the praises of him
who hath call'd you out of darkness into his marvellous light.
I beseech you brethren, by the mercies of God,
that you present your bodies, a living sacrifice, holy,
acceptable unto to God, which is your reasonable service.
  • Offertory Hymn 335 “How shall I sing that majesty” 
  • Communion Hymn 171 “What does the Lord require” 
  • Final Hymn “And can it be that I should gain” 
  • Organ Postlude: Alla Marcia – John Ireland
Music Notes

John Ireland was born near Manchester, England in 1879. He entered the newly-established Royal College of Music in London at the age of fourteen, lost both his parents shortly after, and had to make his own way as an orphaned teenager, studying piano, organ and composition. The last was under Sir Charles Stanford, who taught many of the English composers who emerged at the end of the 19th century, including Ralph Vaughan Williams, Gustav Holst, Herbert Howells and a host of others. Ireland emerged as a celebrated composer towards the end of World War I when his Violin Sonata No.2 brought him overnight fame. From then until his death in 1962 he led an outwardly uneventful life combining composition, composition teaching at the Royal College (where his pupils included Benjamin Britten and E.J. Moeran), and his position as organist and choirmaster at St. Luke's Church, Chelsea, in London. He composed a great deal of music, although not a lot for the church. Ireland is known throughout the English-speaking world for his music to the hymn “My song is love unknown”, and is justly famous for “Greater love”, this morning’s anthem, which he wrote in 1912. Both “Sursum corda” (the prelude) and “Alla marcia” (the postlude) were composed a year earlier.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

All Saints - November 4, 2012

  • Organ Prelude: “Jerusalem, My Happy Home” and “There Is a Happy Land” – George Shearing 
  • Opening Hymn 276 “For all the saints” 
  • Service Music: David Hurd 
  • Psalm 24: 1-6 (Tone VIII.1)
  • Anthem: O sing joyfully – Adrian Batten
    O sing joyfully unto God our strength; make a cheerful noise unto the God of Jacob. Take the song, bring hither the tabret, the merry harp with the lute. Blow up the trumpet in the new moon, even in the time appointed, and upon our solemn feast-day. For this was made a statute for Israel, and a law of the God of Jacob. (Psalm 81:1-4)
  • Offertory Hymn 275 “O what their joy and their glory must be” 
  • Communion Hymn 282 “Let saints on earth in concert sing” 
  • Final Hymn 278 “Jerusalem the golden” 
  • Organ Postlude: “Menuet Gothique” (from Suite Gothique) – Leon Boellman 
Music Notes:

In 1977 the American composer Dale Wood and jazz pianist George Shearing created a volume of organ settings of early American folk hymns entitled Sacred Sounds from George Shearing. Over a period of 11 weeks Shearing had recorded a series of improvisations at the piano. After the tapes were transcribed to paper, Shearing visited Dale in his studio. Dale spent hours at the organ making suggestions of registrations and textures, while Shearing with his critical ear listened for accuracy. This morning’s organ preludes are from this set of pieces.

Léon Boëllmann (1862-1897) moved in the best circles of the French musical world, and as a pleasing personality, he made friends of many artists and was able to give concerts both in Paris and the provinces. Boëllmann became known as "a dedicated [organ] teacher, trenchant critic, gifted composer and successful performer ... who coaxed pleasing sounds out of recalcitrant instruments". His best-known composition is Suite Gothique in four sections, of which the Menuet is the third. Boellman composed it in 1895, two years before his premature death at age 35.