• English Organ Sonatas - Vol. 1

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English Organ Sonatas - Vol. 1

  • Editor: Iain Quinn
  • Publisher: Ut Orpheus
  • Code: HS 299
  •   In Stock
  • € 16.95

William Thomas Best (1826-1897): Sonata in Sol maggiore
William Spark (1823-1897): Sonata in Re minore

The organ sonatas of William Thomas Best and William Spark are the earliest examples of English organ sonatas and mark the advent of a tradition that continues with little interruption until the mid-twentieth century. Although the exact dates of composition are unknown it seems likely that Spark’s Sonata was written in 1858 and Best’s Sonata in 1862. The date of the Spark is more certain because the cover of the first edition states that it was performed at a music festival in Leeds Town Hall in September, 1858. However, it is also possible that both were written earlier. The cover of the Best refers to him working at Wallasey Parish Church where he was appointed in 1860. However, that does not preclude the possibility that he wrote it some years before and published it later.
As discussed in The Genesis and Development of an English Organ Sonata (2017), the English sonatas had an important pedagogical role jointly inherited from Mendelssohn’s very practical and popular approach to the instrument and the continued European legacy of the lesson-sonata tradition whereby in learning a piece you also learned the instrument and vice versa.

Editor: Iain Quinn

Publication Date: 1/11/2021

Pages: pp. 52

Size: 230x310 mm

Binding: Saddle stitching

ISMN: 979-0-2153-2696-5

Code: HS 299

Sunday by Sunday (June 2021)
... Well-researched prefaces offer details on the composers, sources and performance practice. These editions are a must for lovers of Victoriana, and for those who are intrigued to delve a little further into organ music of the 19th century. (Richard Brasier)
The Organ Magazine No. 396 (May-July 2021)
These three admirably produced and relatively inexpensive volumes constitute an admirable addition to the organ repertoire. ... Many organists will welcome these six works with open arms, for they are all fine works, throughly representative of their musical ethnicity and period, with each exibiting some quite individual characteristics. ... thanks to Dr Quinn’s musical assiduity and to Ut Orpheus’ excellent presentation. (Robert Matthew-Walker)
Organ Music Reviews (June 2021)
... These substantial Sonatas can be played on large or small organs ... Helpful registration information, together with aspects of period performance, is included in the editor’s prefaces. This is an evocative discovery for players and audiences alike; it merits my strong recommendation. I hope further volumes will follow. (Michael Overbury)