1.23.2011

Didòmhnaich Adhradh: 01/23/11



"The aim and final end of all music should be none other than the Glory of God and refreshment of the soul." Thus spake Bach the elder. His second son adds, "Play with the soul, not like a trained bird!" Good advice.
Picture
Blessed Mother Marianne Cope
Prelude: O Happy Day - arr. Tedd Smith (pf)
Choir: How can I keep from Singing? - arr. Sally Deford (pf)
Offertory: Prelude on "Hearly" - Flor Peeters (o)
Postlude: Short Prelude and Fugue in G Major - J.S. Bach (o)
This was, purportedly, the favorite song of my great-grandmother (mother's-father's-mother). Tedd's arrangement passes through several interesting textures and keys and degrees of improvisation, and actually arrives back at the tonic with a sort of cadential figure (G - A-flat - D-flat - G).
I never realized how many different rhythms this old Appalachian tune can take. Sally likes to begin the anacrusis at different places in the meter and either extend the held note or change time signatures. The choir did an admirable job for only seeing it that day and for only having an octet.
Peeters is exceedingly charming. This simple and meditative hymn in moderate triple meter swells thunderous and yet intimate pedal work in the second strain. Gorgeous.
I really enjoy this prelude and fugue. The prelude's form is in itself a charming little world of variation: slow chorale, skipping toccata with modulation sequences, pedal solo, and cadence. I love to play the fugue with plenty of bounce, adding space between the descending figure. They both have such life to them. 

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