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Remember, O Lord, what is come upon us

author of text
Lamentations 5:1, 7, 15, 17,19

Thomas Attwood Walmisley (1814-1856) was sent by his father to study with Thomas Attwood (1765-1838) who in turn had been a pupil of Mozart. Walmisley went to Cambridge and must go down in history as one of the busiest organists of all time. During term time he played at no fewer than eight services in Cambridge as follows: St John’s College 7.15am; Trinity College 8.00am; King’s College 9.30am; Great St Mary’s 10.30am; Great St Mary’s 2.00pm; King’s College 3.15pm; St John’s College 5.00pm; and finally Trinity College at 6.15pm.

Walmisley became Professor of Music at Cambridge in 1836, although at that time the post was so low-ranking that entry to the Senate House was barred. He elevated the chair by his own high academic abilities, on his own initiative instigated lectures on the subject of music for the university as a whole, and championed Johann Sebastian Bach of whom an English public knew virtually nothing. Walmisley died at an early age, suffering from depression and alcoholism. One curiosity is the tale of his well-known D minor Service which the composer threw into the wastepaper basket. It was rescued by the Reverend A R Ward of St John’s College, Cambridge, and has gone on to be one of the most popular settings of the Evening canticles.

Walmisley’s Lenten anthem Remember, O Lord, what is come upon us (1838) is unusual on account of the opening sarabande for organ which is followed by a dark but effective male-voice quartet. There are solo parts for a bass and a treble, the former a recitative and the latter one of Walmisley’s best treble solos. The final stages of the sturdy fugue which concludes the anthem (‘Thou, O Lord, remainest for ever’) contains an entry of the fugue subject in augmentation in the bass—that is to say, in note values twice as long as found in the initial subject; surely homage to the German master.

from notes by William McVicker 1996


The English Anthem, Vol. 6
CDA66826Archive Service


Track 12 on CDA66826 [14'07] Archive Service

Track-specific metadata for CDA66826 track 12

Recording date
30 June 1995
Recording venue
St Paul's Cathedral, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Arthur Johnson
Recording engineer
Antony Howell & Julian Millard
Hyperion usage
  1. The English Anthem, Vol. 6 (CDA66826)
    Disc 1 Track 12
    Release date: April 1996
    Deletion date: November 2011
    Archive Service
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