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Idyll No. 3

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (03/04/19)
Composer: Gray, Alan
Sample Producer: Milan Digital Audio
Sample Set: Salisbury Cathedral Father Willis
Software: Hauptwerk IV
Genre: Early 20th century
Alan Gray (23 December 1855 – 27 September 1935) was a British organist and composer. He was born in York, and attended St Peter's School and Trinity College, Cambridge. From 1883 until 1893 he was Director of Music at Wellington College. In 1893 he returned to Cambridge, succeeding C.V.Stanford as organist of Trinity College, and remained organist there until 1930. He died in Cambridge in 1935 at the age of 79. Among his compositions are music for the Anglican services, the monumental anthem, "What are these that glow from afar?", which was written to commemorate those who fell in World War I, and numerous organ works, many of high quality, and many extremely difficult. Sadly, his organ works have all but disappeared from the repertoire, even from the repertoire of English organists.

Gray was a TALL man, who stood at 6'7"! However he was said to be very gentle, especially with choristers, who loved him greatly. He is still thought of with words of praise at Trinity College.

The definition of an "idyll" is not just a "pastoral scene," but can also be "a narrative poem treating an epic, romantic, or tragic theme."

"Idyll No. 3" dates from 1912 and is dedicated "To Cyril B. Rootham" (1875-1938), organist of St. John's College, Cambridge.

The motto at the start of this unusual work is: "Perhaps the numbers flow For old, unhappy, for off things, And battles long ago."

If you're thinking that this "sounds a little odd," well, I believe you'll see how this "oddness" is incorporated into this rather "wild" but brief epic.

There is a "military feel" to this, but the "beat is off," and more like small boys playing at war, rather than a real battle - or perhaps the battle is real, but time has erased the memories.

The score is attached below, as well as photos of Alan Gray, of Trinity College Chapel and his memorial in Trinity College ante-chapel, as well as one of Cyril Rootham, the dedicatee.

"Idyll No. 2":
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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