John Kitchen (Edinburgh)
The Jim Lodge recital
Overture to the Occasional Oratorio: G.F. Handel arr. W.T. Best
Five organ chorales from the Orgelbüchlein: Johann Sebastian Bach
Wer nur den lieben Gott lässt walten BWV 642
Wenn wir in höchsten Nöthen sein BWV 641
Der Tag, der ist so freudenreich BWV 605
Ich ruf zu dir, Herr Jesu Christ BWV 639
Heut’ triumphiret Gottes Sohn BWV 630
Fantasia à gusto italiano: Johann Ludwig Krebs
Severn Suite Op. 87: Edward Elgar transcribed Jeremy Cull
Grand choeur in D: Alexandre Guilmant
Invocation in B flat: Alexandre Guilmant
Celebration (2014): Cecilia McDowall
Concert Overture in C major: Alfred Hollins
A Scottish Tuba Tune: Donald Bienfait Sprinck
Dance variations on Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer: Clifton Hughes
Toccata nuptiale: Christopher Maxim
Edinburgh City Organist John Kitchen makes a welcome and long-awaited visit to the Albert Hall. He is resident at the Usher Hall where the organ was built by Norman and Beard in 1914, just a year after they’d completed the instrument in Nottingham Cathedral over the road from the Albert Hall.
At the Usher Hall they have a series called Get Organised, and what John gives us in his recital reflects those programmes with their sense of something for everyone. Large Edwardian organs were one-man orchestras, and the Handel piece at the start shows this. Transcriptions are back in fashion and so we hear a new one of Elgar’s Severn Suite, the original version of what became his second organ sonata.
Binns’s organs were inspired by those of Edmund Schulze which themselves looked back to more baroque models. To demonstrate that tradition John shows us some of Bach’s chorale preludes and then a piece by Bach’s pupil Krebs. He takes us bang up to date too with a piece by contemporary Edinburgh composer Cecilia Macdowell, plus a Scots answer to Norman Cocker.
What is the connection between Edinburgh and Nottingham? Alfred Hollins. He was an organist for many years in Edinburgh but was “discovered” in Nottingham, at the church which is now the Broadway Cinema. Hollins received great encouragement from Guilmant from whom we are also to hear; he knew Nottingham too!
Great fun to finish with: only 167 days to Christmas following John’s recital, but we’re already thinking of Rudolf. Then to end, Westminster Cathedral meets the music hall.