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Chorale Prelude "Ach bleib’ bei uns, Herr Jesu Christ"

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (08/05/22)
Composer: De Lamarter, Eric
Sample Producer: Milan Digital Audio
Sample Set: Salisbury Cathedral Father Willis
Software: Hauptwerk IV
Genre: Mid-20th Century
Eric De Lamarter (February 18, 1880 - Lansing, Michigan, - May 17, 1953 - Orlando, Florida, USA) was an American organist, conductor, music critic, teacher, and composer. He studied organ with Fairclough in St. Paul, Middelschulte in Chicago, and Guilmant and Widor in Paris (1901-1902), and was a graduate of Albion College in Michigan (1900).

After finishing his studies, he held several organ positions in Chicago, notably with the Fourth Presbyterian Church (1914-1936). He was music critic for the Chicago Inter-Ocean (1901-1914), the Chicago Record-Herald (1905-1908), and the Chicago Tribune (1909-1910). He also taught at Olivet College (1904-1905), Chicago Musical College (1909-1910), University of Missouri, Ohio State University, and the University of Texas. He was a close friend and advisor to Leo Sowerby as well as a champion of Sowerby's music.

"Chorale Prelude on 'Ach bleib’ bei uns, Herr Jesu Christ'" was published by M. Witmark & Sons in 1946.

It is a quiet, yet intense of the famous melody. De Lamarter attributes the tune to Hans Leo Hassler (1564-1612), but more modern scholarship assigns it to Seth Calvisius (1556-1615), an exact contemporary of Hassler's.

The work reminded me of some of the preludes of Max Reger, not only because of the chromaticism (which is different from Reger's), but also because of the slow pulse value of the notes.

The work has two technical challenges to deal with. The first is that it is written on four staves, two of which are assigned to the left hand part, and the second is the completely independent, and almost constant management of the two expression pedals.

De Lamarter wrote much larger and more substantial works than this, but you will need to really want to play them, as the technical demands are great, and you'll need a big American organ to do them justice.

The score is attached below, was well as a photo of the composer, and the church at which he played.

The chorale text is given in the First Comment.
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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