Francesca Massey (Durham Cathedral)
THE JIM LODGE RECITAL – given in memory of a much-loved organist, stalwart attendee at the Binns recitals and longstanding treasurer of the Nottingham and District Society of Organists; the recital is generously sponsored by Jim’s daughter Dr Mary Whitby.
Jeanne Demessieux: Te Deum, Op. 11
Percy Whitlock: Fantasie Choral No. 1 in D flat major
Ad Wammes: Ride in a high-speed train
Flor Peeters: Suite Modale, Op. 43 (Koraal; Scherzo; Adagio; Toccata)
Paul Creston: Suite for Organ, Op. 70 (Prelude; Prayer; Toccata)
Richard Wagner (arr. Edwin Lemare): Siegfried-Idyll
Richard Wagner (arr. Edwin Lemare): Ride of the Valkyries
Francesca Massey has been Sub-Organist at Durham Cathedral since 2011; previous appointments include St George’s Chapel Windsor, Gonville and Caius College Cambridge, and Peterborough Cathedral. She fairly whirls us into this concert with Jeanne Demessieux’s jazzy take on the age-old plainsong Te Deum; French organists regularly surprise us with their responses to Gregorian chant and the feisty Demessieux (who once played in Nottingham) is no exception. Francesca stays “modern” with Ad Wammes’s Ride in a high-speed train, an organist’s response you might think to John Adams’s Short ride in a fast machine; Francesca played his La Vallée des Danses at Southwell Minster last year, while his Miroirs has been heard at the Albert Hall. The rest of the first half of this recital portrays old friends: Whitlock’s first Fantaisie Choral is just made for the Binns organ, while Flor Peeters, who once played here, is presented in his characteristic bitter-sweet style.
A new piece to us all in the second half, from twentieth-century American composer Paul Creston. Finally it’s Wagner out of Lemare, who opened our “New City Organ” in 1910. First the gentle Siegfried Idyll, then to finish the blockbuster Ride of the Valkyries.