John Stanley was born in London on 17th January, 1712. At about the age of two, he had the misfortune to fall on a marble hearth with a china basin in his hand, an accident which left him almost blind.
He began studying music at the age of seven. Under the guidance of Maurice Greene, composer and organist at St. Paul's Cathedral, he studied "with great diligence, and a success that was astonishing" (Burney). At the age of nine he played the organ, probably as an occasional deputy, at All Hallows, Bread Street. The organist died on 23rd September 1723 and exactly one month later eleven-year-old Stanley was appointed organist to the church at a salary of £20 per annum.
When he was fourteen "in preference to a great number of candidates" (Burney) he was chosen as organist at St. Andrew's, Holborn and at the age of seventeen became the youngest person ever to obtain the Bachelor of Music degree (B.Mus.) at Oxford University.
In 1734 he was appointed organist to the Society of the Inner Temple - a position he held until his death. It was at the ancient Temple Church that his brilliant playing upon the organ and harpsichord attracted the attention of many fine musicians including Handel who regularly visited the church to hear him.
The Voluntary heard here is a "Cornet voluntary." In the first section, the Diapasons of the Great are heard, and in the second part, the Cornet of the Swell is featured, played against the Stopped Diapason 8' and Chimney Flute 4' of the Great.
The Great also serves as the "Echo."
The score is attached below, as well as a portrait of Stanley, and an 18th century image of the Temple Church.
In addition there is a photo showing the Tickell organ in the Church of St. Mary-le-Bow.
Tomorrow, a day before Thanksgiving, I'm going to upload "American Triumphant" (Pilgrim Suite No. 3) by American composer, Marion Austin Dunn. It's a rather spectacular piece, so, I hope you will listen. :-)
Music courtesy of voixcelestis. THANKS, Mike!