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Organ Master Series Volume 1

Organ Master Series, Volume 1Dame Gillian Weir plays at The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston. Priory CD 751 is the Organ Master Series Volume 1. Playing works by Jongen, Willan, Hindemith and Reubke, this virtuoso performance on one of America's largest organs displays the full range of color and dynamic this instrument is capable of. Several articles below refer to the tonal design of this instrument as originally implemented. The program notes that accompany this spectacular CD describe the changes made to the instrument when it was reconditioned from 1995-1999 under Phelps' supervision.

Reviews

"A better tribute to the achievement of Phelps (Weir's late husband) than this disc is hard to imagine." Choir & Organ

"The retrospective tenor of the series betokens an artist at the height of her powers... the towering musicianship in evidence from beginning to end." William Whitehead, BBC Music Magazine

"GILLIAN WEIR is something of an organist's organist and her new project shows why she's held in such high regard. This is the first of three CD's in memory of her late husband, Lawrence Phelps, performed on instruments he designed and built... pieces, player, instrument and recording are all superb. Andrew McGregor (BBC Radio 3 Discs of the Month)

"A mouth-watering programme, containing four of the finest romantic works for organ. It has a thrilling tutti and a huge range of lovely colours which Dame Gillian exploits with complete mastery... enjoy this irresistible combination of great music, great playing and spectacular instrument." Christopher Nickol, Gramophone

"The musicality comes first from Dame Gillian, however, who produces to my mind a riveting performance Weir also achieves music of intimacy from an instrument of colossal size, as well as showing off periodically the wonderfully ensembled upperwork and the heavy reeds with their beautifully even voicing. But the most admirable feature of this recording is the continued sense of taut control over the music that manifests itself with most power in the glorious, driven performance of the Reubke Sonata. Such control - the presence of real musical intellect that allows the logic of the music to be clear - marks the passages of high drama but also the lyrical episodes. Reubke's symphonic work sounds as if it s exactly that - a symphony, and it is difficult to believe that one person is in control of the sound." Francis O'Gorman, Organists Review

Track Listings

Priory Records(external link) PRCD 751

TrackComposerMusic
1 Joseph Jongen (1873-1953) Sonata Eroica, Op 94
2-4 Healey Willan (1880-1968) Introduction, Passacaglia and Fugue
5-6 Paul Hindemith (1895-1963) Sonata No. 1
7 Julius Reubke (1834-1858) Sonata on the 94th Psalm in C minor