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Hyperion Records

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Fireworks over Stockholm.
© Mikael Damkier, www.dreamstime.com
Track(s) taken from CDA67734
Recording details: June 2008
Västerås Cathedral, Sweden
Produced by Paul Spicer
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: May 2009
Total duration: 8 minutes 2 seconds

'Herrick's playing and imaginative use of the organ's resources are first rate, and he's backed up by a superb recording from Hyperion' (Gramophone)

'This instrument makes a pretty spectacular noise … with plenty of incendiary reeds and pyrotechnic instruments, it provides yet another ideal organ on which Christopher Herrick can light his blue touch paper and not retire but leap onto the pyre and set off as many fireworks as he can in the space of 78 minutes … he is a fluent and fiery champion of the repertoire … Herrick manages to persuade us that it is all worth hearing. He delivers it with enthusiasm and the communicative zeal which is the hallmark of just about everything this outstanding organist ever seems to put his hands and feet to … for lovers of fine organ sound and often spine-tingly virtuoso playing … this disc most certainly is not thirteenth time unlucky' (International Record Review)

Toccata and Fugue in D minor, Op 98
composer
1923; dedicated to William Faulkes

Toccata  [3'06]
Fugue  [4'56]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Edwin Lemare (1866–1934) was one of the outstanding recitalists of his day. After holding various London posts, he emigrated to America, where he is said to have commanded fees previous organists had only dreamt of. His many organ arrangements of orchestral scores are Lemare’s most enduring legacy (one thinks of his Wagner transcriptions and in particular that of the prelude to Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, which Christopher Herrick included in Organ Fireworks VI) but he wrote a considerable number of original compositions, the best-known of which is undoubtedly his D flat major Andantino, which has come to be known as ‘Moonlight and Roses’. The Toccata and Fugue in D minor, Op 98, which is dedicated to William Faulkes and dates from 1923, shows Lemare in an altogether different mode. The brilliant first movement focuses obsessively on the material heard in its first few bars. The second begins with an exposition of almost textbook regularity. Derived from the Toccata, its lively second subject is the basis of a counter-exposition leading to a climax at which both subjects are thrillingly combined. A pedal cadenza precedes a coda which recalls the Toccata, and with a nod in the direction of J S Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor, BWV565, Lemare ends on a minor chord.

from notes by Relf Clark © 2009

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