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Prelude (homage to JSB)

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (06/21/12)
Composer: Harris, William Henry
Sample Producer: Milan Digital Audio
Sample Set: Salisbury Cathedral Father Willis
Software: Hauptwerk
Genre: Romantic
Description:
Sir William Henry Harris (28 March 1883-6 September 1973) was an English organist and composer, affectionately nicknamed 'Doc H' by his choristers.

Harris was born in Fulham, London and died in Petersfield. He was a chorister of Holy Trinity, Tulse Hill. At the age of 14, he took up a "flexible" position as Assistant Organist at St David's Cathedral in Wales, followed at 16 by a scholarship to the Royal College of Music where he was Professor of Organ and Harmony from 1921 to 1955. He was organist at St Augustine's Church, Edgbaston from 1911 to 1919 and concurrently of Assistant Organist at Lichfield Cathedral followed in 1919 by becoming Organist successively at New College and in 1929 Christ Church, Oxford, moving to St. George's Chapel, Windsor in 1933.

Harris is best remembered for his Anglican church music, though his main achievements were as a choir-trainer. His most famous works are the anthems "Faire is the heaven" (1925) and to a lesser extent "Bring us, O Lord God" (1959), both for unaccompanied double choir, and "Strengthen ye the weak hands" (1949) for choir and organ. His very accessible "Communion Service in F" is frequently sung. The canticles Harris in A and Harris in A minor are still sung at Evensong in many Anglican cathedrals. He also composed cantatas and organ pieces, as well as the hymn tune Alberta (often used for the words Lead, Kindly Light), and various Anglican psalm chants.

"Prelude", comes from a collection of "Four Short Pieces", published by Novello, and was "composed in the Thomaskirche, Leipzig, August 1931". It is in a flowing E-flat major, and the references to "O Mensch, bewein dein Sünde gross" are obvious. It is an eloquent homage to the great master.

For this performance, I experimented with a number of solo stops, before settling on the "simplest" of them - the Swell Hautboy 8' (with the Lieblich Gedackt) and Tremolo, accompanied by the Choir Lieblich 8'.
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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