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La Nativité (Trois poèmes évangéliques, No. 2)

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (12/24/15)
Composer: Langlais, Jean
Sample Producer: Milan Digital Audio
Sample Set: Salisbury Cathedral Father Willis
Software: Hauptwerk IV
Genre: Modern
Jean Langlais (1907-1991) was a composer, organist, and influential teacher who studied at the Institution des Jeunes Aveugles (National Institute for the Young Blind) in Paris. Langlais' harmony teacher was Albert Mahaut, a former pupil of César Franck. He studied piano with Blazy and organ with André Marchal, who was also blind. In 1930, Langlais won the premier prix in organ in Marcel Dupré's class at the National Conservatory. In 1934, he won a composition prize in Paul Dukas' class and, like Messiaen, was one of the composer's last students. Langlais studied improvisation with Charles Tournemire and received the Grand Prix d'Exécution et Improvisation des Amis de l'Orgue in 1931. He became organist for St. Pierre de Montrouge. During this time, Langlais composed his first works, the organ pieces Trois poèmes évangéliques (1932) and the 24 Pièces (1933-1939). In 1945, he joined the staff of the Institution des Jeunes Aveugles, where he was to remain for 40 years teaching and conducting the choir.

The vast majority of Langlais' 254 compositions are on religious themes, although there are several concertos, organ symphonies, and individual secular pieces.

"Trois poèmes évangéliques" were published by Hérelle in 1932. The second of these, "La Nativité" is in four "sections" and depict, La Créche (The Manger), Les Anges (The Angels), Les Bergers (The Shepherds), La Sainte Famille (The Holy Family).

I've done this in a slightly "personalized manner," particularly in the "Les Bergers", as I "echo" the phrases of the shepherds' pipes between the Solo Orchestral Oboe, and the Swell Hautboy.

I would have done this on Caen, but the lack of an enclosed Positif really hurts the beauty of this piece. At Salisbury, the Solo "takes the place of" the Positif.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to All!
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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