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Nocturne

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Organ recitals in the UK

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Playing Johann Gottlob Töpfer and Bach's Passacaglia

Playing Johann Gottlob Töpfer and Bach's PassacagliaBy Dr. Wolfram SyréJohann Gottlob Töpfer was ...

Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (10/01/18)
Composer: Shera, Frank H.
Sample Producer: Milan Digital Audio
Sample Set: Salisbury Cathedral Father Willis
Software: Hauptwerk
Genre: Early 20th century
Description:
Frank Henry Shera, M.A., Mus.M. Cantab, F.R.C.O., Hon. A.R.C.M., held the Chair of Music at the University of Sheffield from 1928 to 1948. Born in Sheffield on May 4th 1882, he was educated at Oakham School, and after reading Classics at Jesus College, Cambridge attended the Royal College of Music, where he studied with Stanford and Walford Davies for composition, and Sharpe and Parratt for piano and organ respectively. After teaching at various schools he went in 1916 to Malvern College as Director of Music. Following the founding in 1927 of a Chair of Music at Sheffield, Shera was appointed there the first full-time James Rossiter Hoyle Professor of Music in 1928 (Percy Carter Buck had been appointed to the new post for two terms of the first session only), a position which he held until his resignation in 1948. Whilst at Sheffield he also served as Dean of the Faculty of Arts (1933-1936) and Public Orator (1934-1945). On his retirement he was awarded the title Emeritus Professor.

In comparison with "Aubade," the "Nocturne" is quite different, and actually quite "unusual" for a nocturne, as it does not much of the "shimmer of night" about it.

It was composed in 1919, and published by Oxford University Press in 1928. As far as I know, these are his only 2 published organ works. There are a lot of "parralel chords" in the work, as well as "echo phrases." The whole-tone scale is present in this work, and I'm surprised to see a "Stanford student" writing in such a "modern manner." The work fades away into darkness at the end without ever being what some would call "pretty." It's probably the "sort" of nocturne that will go unloved by most...

The score is attached below, as well as photos of Shera's teachers, Stanford, Parratt, and one of the chapel at Malvern College, Oxford, where Shera was director of music.
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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