Sunday, 12 October 2008

RIP RVW

Today has been declared 'Vaughan-Williams Day', commemorating fifty years since the great man's passing. We marked the occasion by doing the communion setting in G, and the lovely little motet 'O Taste and See'. Delightful pieces both (and there are more, of course). And yet, and yet... I am afraid the great man's contributions to the Anglican choral repertoire do not represent his greatest works. Which is why we also made sure there were plenty of V-W hymns from the English Hymnal. My own especial favourite (not sung out-of-season today) is Withers Rocking Hymn, a lovely Christmas piece so rarely heard today. What sayest thou, dear reader? Which hymns float your musical and spiritual boat? I feel a 'top ten' coming on...

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Unquestionably for me - Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis with Handley conducting.

Suburbia said...

Looking forward to your top ten! Mine would be full of the old ones we used to sing at school, but I find it hard to remember their names now, although I could sing them for you if you like?!! ;)

Gadjo Dilo said...

Is that Bill Withers' Rocking Hymn??

Yes yes, a top ten, purleeeeze!

Kitty said...

I loved 'Holy, Holy, Holy' (to the tune we did it, not the one my parents did it!) when at school, but all time favourite has to be 'Dear Lord and Father of Mankind'. Oh, and 'Abide With Me' might be corny, but it's fab.

x

Doshea3 said...

"Guide me O Thou great Redeemer". Awfully fun to play with a big heavy registration.

"Abide with me". Particularly my own harmonisation of the last verse with loads of loverly chords.

Used to be a big fan of "O worship the King all-glorious above".

"Praise my soul the King of Heaven". Also enormous fun to play, particularly the marvellous harmonisations of the odd-numbered verses.

And speaking of harmonisations, Willcocks' arrangement of "O come all ye faithful" is fun to play.

Incidentally I had a dream last night that I was playing the organ in some odd church with a pint of Guinness in one hand. That's my ideal church job.

Barry Teeth, Beet Poet said...

I find that hymns just make boring church visits longer and more boring.

The Poet Laura-eate said...

Don't worry - one day it will be Can Bass 1 Day! I'd angle for it to be delared a National Holiday too in your shoes!

The Dotterel said...

'Michael' every time for me; and if not 'Michael', 'Coe Fen'. I'm quite partial to East Acklam, too (and Down Ampney, obviously).

having my cake said...

Oh gosh, reading some of those hymn titles takes me back to school assembly. There are some absolute gems listed!

Kevin Musgrove said...

"Hills of the north rejoice," was the first one we could test our breaking voices with, so I've always had a soft spot for it.

I once heard something beautiful in a Greek Orthodox cathedral and never found out what it was called. I've come to the conclusion that it's best as a romantic mystery.

Lapinbizarre said...

Did Beecham really comment with regret on V-W's not having included a theme by Tallis in more of his works ["Variations on a theme by TT is fair enough - unfortunately V-W did not include a theme by Tallis in any of his other works"]?

Can Bass 1 said...

I believe he did. How rude!

Lucy Fishwife said...

"Tell Out, My Soul, The Glory of the Lord", "For Those In Peril On The Sea", "It Came Upon a Midnight Clear", "For All The Saints", and the whole of Benjamin Britten's Ceremony of Carols. And Noye's Fludde if it comes to that ("Marry! this is hotte!")

Doshea3 said...

"Tell Out My Soul" sung to "Woodlands", I hope...!

Old Fogey said...

It's not a hymn exactly, but do you know Dyson's Hierusalem? It's one of the most sublime pieces I've ever listened to, Spem in alium not excepted - for soprano, chorus and orchestra.
OF