David Butterworth (The Jim Lodge Recital)
“Spanish incision and Swiss precision”
Batalla Famossa: Anon
Prelude and Fugue in B minor S. 544: J.S. Bach (in memoriam KJP)
Fantasia: Weinen, Klagen, Sorgen, Zagen (1863): Franz Liszt
Rumba sur les grands jeux: Pierre Cholley (b. 1962)
Keep Cool: Michael Schütz (b. 1963)
Choral no. 2 in B minor: César Franck
Grand Fantasia “The Storm”: Jacques Lemmens
Canon in B minor op. 56 no.4: Robert Schumann
Toccata in D flat op. 104: Josef Jongen (in memoriam RGW)
Binns Organ custodian David Butterworth gives this year’s Jim Lodge recital, an event sponsored annually by Dr Mary Whitby in memory of her father, a much-loved and longstanding treasurer of the Nottingham and District Society of Organists and a staunch supporter of the Albert Hall recitals.
The Spanish Incision in the title of David’s recital recalls the famous prominent trumpets that are such a feature of Spanish organs. It will be interesting to hear Binns’s Germanic reeds evoking those heroic sounds.
J S Bach then makes an appearance with one of his greatest works, performed in memory of Kendrick Partington, for many years organist of St Peter’s Nottingham and director of music at Nottingham High School. He was the last person to play the Albert Hall organ before the building’s closure in 1985, and was a stalwart campaigner for the restoration of the instrument, becoming president of the Binns Organ Trust.
Virtuoso pianist (who once played in Nottingham) and rather more cautious organist Franz Liszt is then heard with a piece inspired by Bach (the “Crucifixus” of his B minor Mass) but taking music far away from what Bach would have known; one trusts however that JSB would have enjoyed the glorious chorale which the work concludes. Another pianist of that time, Robert Schumann, also makes an appearance, rather more restrained.
The “Swiss Precision” comes from two contemporary musicians; a mere look at their titles suggests that a fascinating time awaits us.
Franck’s second Choral, the most “orchestral” of the three (it has affinities with Franck’s symphony in D minor) shares the second half with two composers who spent several years in England, Jacques Lemmens whose Grand Fantasia “The Storm” was played by Thomas Trotter at the reopening of the Binns organ in October 1993, and Jongen’s exciting Toccata which brings this recital to a dazzling end. The Jongen is also a tribute: to Richard Gregson-Williams who was the first director of the Nottingham Festival and who later carried out similar work in Chichester.