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Con moto moderato (D Major)

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (07/24/17)
Composer: Smart, Henry Thomas
Sample Producer: Lavender Audio
Sample Set: Hereford Cathedral Willis Organ
Software: Hauptwerk
Genre: Romantic
Description:
Born October 25, 1813, in London. He was the son of Henry Smart, a music publisher, orchestra director, and an accomplished violinist. His uncle, Sir George Thomas Smart, was one of the greatest English conductors and was also the organist of St. George's, Windsor.

Henry Thomas studied music with his father and attended school at Highgate. As a boy, he spent free time at the Robson organ factory and attended scientific lectures at the Royal Institution. As a twelve year-old, he had a talent for mechanical drawing. Later, he refused a commission in the Indian Army so that he could study law. But after four years of a legal career, he completely directed his time and talent to the study of music. He built on his father's earlier training to study on his own. Soon, he was recognized as one of England's finest organists and as an accomplished composer.

He served as organist at the Parish Church, Blackburn, Lancashire, 1831-1836; at St. Philip's, Regent Street, London, 1838-1839; at St. Luke's, Old Street, 1844-1864; and St. Pancras Church, London, 1865-1879. He designed an organ for Leeds Town Hall in 1858 and another at St. Andrew's Hall in Glasgow, 1877. He was one of five organists asked to perform at the Great Exhibition of 1851.

Smart composed a variety of music including cantatas, trios, duets, songs, an opera, an oratorio, services, organ music, and many hymn tunes.

His eyesight began to wane at age eighteen and he was stricken with complete blindness at age fifty-two. His long recognized gift for extemporizing allowed him to continue his work as organist, composer, and superintendent of more organ installations. He died July 6, 1879, in London.

"Con moto Moderato" came as very pleasant surprise to me! It's "old-fashioned" in style and in registration, and I've tried to play it as such. There is an exquisite flow and sense of balance throughout.

The score is attached below (p 92), as well as photo of Smart and the churches at which he served as organist.
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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