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Prelude on "Helmsley"

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (12/12/16)
Composer: Groom, Lester
Sample Producer: Milan Digital Audio
Sample Set: Salisbury Cathedral Father Willis
Software: Hauptwerk
Genre: Modern
Lester H. Groom (1929–2000) was born in Chicago and received his early
keyboard training from both his mother and father. His father later became his major professor in organ and composition at Wheaton College (Illinois), where he received a Bachelor of Music degree in 1951. He earned the Master of Music degree in organ performance from Northwestern University in 1952. Groom held teaching positions at Moody Bible
Institute (Chicago), Blue Mountain College (Mississippi), and Baker University (Kansas). He joined the faculty of Seattle Pacific University in 1969, where he taught organ, harpsichord, music theory, and
composition. He retired from SPU in 1991 and was named Professor Emeritus the following year. Throughout his career, he held positions as church organist and choir director. He served as organist of First
Presbyterian Church, Seattle from 1979 until his retirement in 1996.

Groom's published works include organ and choral compositions, articles, and music reviews. He was a specialist in the art of organ improvisation and was a frequent lecturer at church music workshops and for thirteen summers he served on the faculty of the Evergreen Conference School of Church Music (Colorado).

This piece is a distinctive prelude on the famous Advent hymn tune "Helmsley," composed by Thomas Arne (1710-1778).

Groom sets the well-known melody in a distinctive and almost "off beat" way, which adds an element of interest and "newness" to the melody. The piece is dedicated to Groom's daughter, Rebecca te Velde, herself a well-known organist.

This work is part of an upcoming collection of selected works by Lester Groom, soon to be published by Lorenz.

I will be uploading the Christmas works from the group over the next few weeks, and also recording the other works in January.

I could not find any photos of Lester Groom, but I did include a photo of a painting of Thomas Arne, which was done in the year of his death, 1778.
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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