Restored organ in fine tune at concert
MOZART considered the pipe organ "The King of instruments", and his description embraced this concert celebrating both the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the restoration of the organ at Waltham All Saints Parish Church.
Paul Hale, organist of Southwell Minster, the cathedral of Nottinghamshire, performed the opening recital and declared the restored Brindley and Foster organ to be marvellous.
Declaring this to be a weekend for which we had much to be thankful of, he commenced with Sigfrid-Elert's Nun Danket alle Gott (Now Thank We All Our God).
His carefully chosen programme included delightful compositions by John Stanley, Bach, Vierne and Schumann.
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Selected with care, they reflected the organs versatility and the contrasting styles and international musical influences across three centuries.
A strategically-placed camera and screen allowed us to watch Paul at work as we savoured his sensitive musicianship.
They were also useful for a light-hearted and informative tutorial on how to play the organ; fortunately, this did not prove necessary.
However, I am sure many of us will have been surprised to learn that Mendelssohn's collaboration with Queen Victoria resulted in the introduction of organ pedals to this country.
Meanwhile, Walton's pseudo-renaissance style film score for Richard lll reminded us of the continuity of royalty.
Yet, it was his rousing Crown Imperial march, from our own Queen's coronation, that proved a glorious climax to this celebratory concert.