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Celebrating the pipe organ, the King of Instruments

The Modern Organist

…a bicentennial reflection upon the art of one of the most popular and powerful Parisian organists of the 19th century, Louis James Alfred Lefébure-Wely (1817-1869).

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Audio Complete Show 1 hr 58 Min

Audio 1745 Hour 1 59:00 Min

Audio 1745 Hour 2 59:00 Min

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Music played in the program

Hour 1

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Offertoire in G (No. 8), fr L’organiste moderne –Richard Lea (1967 Walker/Metropolitan Cathedral, Liverpool, England) Priory 726

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Adoro te (alternatum) –L’Accent Grave; Vincent Genvrin (1862 Cavaillé-Coll/St. Sulpice, Paris) Hortus 005

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  2 Sacred Songs (O salutaris hostia; Benissons a jamais) –Emmanuel Martin & Cécile Bodereau, soprano; Béatrice Duchéne, violin; Guilaine Petit, harp; Le Concert des Dames/Fréderic Bourdin, director; Olivier Perin (1846 Cavaillé-Coll/Orleans Cathedral, France) VXDI 1

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Salon Music (Montagnarde; La désespérance; Marche des gardes), fr Suite No.2 –Joris Verdin (Debain harmonicorde) Ricercar 163147

LEFÉBURE- WELY:  Scene Pastorale in G –David Sanger (1994 Walker/Exeter College Chapel, Oxford, England) Meridian 84296

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Verset in G; Offertoire in d –Ben van Oosten (1846 Cavaillé-Coll/La Madeleine, Paris) MD&G 316 1278

Hour 2

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Prelude and Communion in F –Rene Saorgin (1845 Lété/Nantua Abbey, France) Harmonia Mundi 1901205

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  2 Sacred Songs (Alfn d’etre docile et sage; Mon fils pour apprendre) –Pythagore Vocal Ensemble/Géraldine Toutain, director; Vincent Genvrin (1946 Cavaillé-Coll/La Madeleine, Paris) Hortus 004

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Andante (No. 1) and Sortie (No. 8) in B-flat –Alfred Müller (1977 Schuke-Berlin/St. Matthias Basilica , Trier, Germany) Psallite 60201

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Bolero de Concert –David Britton (1987 Rosales/Trinity Cathedral, Portland, OR) Delos 3077

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Sortie in E-flat –Timothy Smith (Aeolian-Skinner/Riverside Church, New York, NY) Pro Organo 7146

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Pastorale (No. 16) and Offertoire (No. 15) in C, fr L’organiste modern –Richard Lea (1967 Walker/Metropolitan Cathedral, Liverpool, England) Priory 785

LEFÉBURE-WELY:  Sortie Missum redemptorem; Sortie in B-flat –La Lyre Séraphique; Vincent Genvrin (1862 Cavaillé-Coll/St. Sulpice, Paris) Hortus 005

A precocious and prolific talent, with more than 200 works in his catalog, Lefébure-Wely was the incarnation of the organ in the Second Empire.  Though often later derided for his popular style, Lefébure-Wely nevertheless was “an exceptionally talented dandy who, better than anyone, grasped the musical potential of the new voices and combinations of the evolving Cavaillé-Coll pipe organs to create music that was thrilling, renewing, impressive, and at even times heart-breaking.”

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