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May 3 Organ Recital and Evensong

At 5 p.m., a 30-minute organ recital will precede the Evensong, to feature our grand instrument, the Aeolian-Skinner, designed by G. Donald Harrison, and our Associate Organist-Choirmaster, John Palmer. John will play a varied program of pieces by Bach, Wagner, Walton, and Howells. He briefly describes them here:

The Toccata and Fugue in F Major, BWV 540 is an organ work written by Johann Sebastian Bach. It is thought by some that Bach joined together two previously separate pieces to create this work. The next piece is by Richard Wagner (1813 - 1883), a German composer, primarily known for his operas. This composition is a transcription of the orchestral music from Scene 4 opening, "Elsa's Procession to the Cathedral" from the opera Lohengrin. Two pieces by William Walton (1902 – 1983) will be featured from his suite entitled Music for Children. During a sixty-year career, Walton wrote music in several classical genres and styles, from film scores to opera. These two charming pieces show us Walton at his most playful. Herbert Howells (1892 – 1983) was an English composer, organist, and teacher, most famous for his large output of Anglican church music. The last piece on the program, "Master Tallis's Testament" from his Six Pieces (1953), was one of Howells' favorite compositions, and he paid homage to composer Ralph Vaughan Williams by calling it a "footnote" to Vaughan Williams' Tallis.

Then, at 5:30 Calvary Choir will present another service of Choral Evensong. Evensong is a beautiful service of sung prayers to close the day. The choir will sing a grand setting of the canticles (Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis) by Charles Stanford, and an evocative anthem by Jonathan Dove, Seek him that maketh the seven stars. If you’d like a preview of this seven-minute anthem, you can find it here, performed by England’s Tenebrae Choir

This anthem was generously donated to the Calvary Choir by Calvary parishioner and music patron, David Stearns. If you would like to gift the Music Department with an anthem, we would gratefully accept your donation. You may contact organist-choirmaster Kristin Lensch.

A light reception will follow in the Great Hall.

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