Dr. J. Varley Roberts (1841-1920) was organist of St. Bartholomew, Armley, Leeds - BEFORE the Schulze organ was installed there. These two pieces are part of the musical illustrations for my upcoming sample set spotlight on The Barde,
Roberts had an illustrious career, and he was a major figure in his day. He received his Mus.B. (Oxon) in 1871, and his Mus.D. (Oxon, in 1876, the same year that he became an F.R.C.O. He was a pupil of Bird and Burton. His positions included St. John’s, Farsley, 1853-62; St. Bartholomew’s, Armley, Leeds, 1862-68; Halifax Parish Church, 1868-82; Magdalen College Chapel, Oxford, 1882-1919; St. Giles’, Oxford, 1885-93. Founder and conducted of the Oxford University Glee and Madrigal Society; lecturer in harmony and counterpoint at Oxford University. Composed church music, cantatas, anthems, organ pieces, songs, part-songs.
"Andante" comes from "The Organist's Quarterly Journal," a significant series, edited by William Spark, Organist of Leeds Town Hall.
The "Postlude in F" is probably Roberts most well-known organ work.
It is a true Victorian march, and the old Schulze really "rolls it" down the nave!
Once again, the influence of Mendelssohn is present here, this time, the "War March of the Priests," made famous by Vincent Price in "The Abominable Dr. Phibes!"
This is a brave and heroic outpouring, solid, appealing, and not all that easy, especially in bringing off all the details.
The score is attached below (this work on the 29th page) in an edition by William C. Carl, a Guilmant student, based in NYC, and one of the leading organists of his day.
Several photos of J. Varley Roberts are attached, as well as a photo of the Chapel at Magdalen College, Oxford, as well as the new organ there, something vastly different from the organ that Roberts played.