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Finale on "Jerusalem the Golden" (preceded by the Hymn)

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (01/18/13)
Composer: Spark, William
Sample Producer: Milan Digital Audio
Sample Set: Salisbury Cathedral Father Willis
Software: Hauptwerk
Genre: Romantic
William Spark (1823-1897) was the son of a lay-vicar of Exeter Cathedral and later became a chorister there. He studied with Samuel Sebastian Wesley, the greatest musician of the day, and was the organist of several churches before settling in at St. George's Church, Leeds. During his lifetime he served as editor of various musical publications and wrote several books in addition to numerous organ and choral compositions.

This is the kind of work that would be improvised by the organist at the conclusion of the service - probably Evensong. It starts out like it's going to be a great fugue, but actually, it's really NOT a fugue - calling it "fugue-like" would be more accurate, although even this doesn't last long. Spark, unlike his teacher, did not have the contrapuntal skill to work this through... :-(

Still, it's an effective piece on a wonderful melody that is rarely heard these days. I don't think I have ever heard another work based on this melody.

I did a little research on St. George's Church in Leeds. It's still there, but looks like it has gone "completely modern"... :-( It appears that everything, other than the Victorian gothic reredos (behind where the high altar once stood) is gone. They pride themselves on the "informal worship" and I don't think they even have an organ or choir...

I'm going to post a reply with the words of this wonderful hymn, and all you REAL Anglicans can sing along with it! The hymn leads directly into the Voluntary.

I did this format once before, and many people seemed to like it. I hope this will not disappoint... ;-)
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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