Neglect of British and American Concert Organ Music

Neglect of British and American Concert Organ Music

One essay by Dr Wolfram Syré in his blog on, “The Barde,” was kindly brought to my attention by Steve Schlesing. The full title is too long for a good headline, but here it is: “The scandalous neglect of British and US-American concert hall organ-music is still going strong until today.” His writings and choices of literature often coincide with mine, and this column is one of them. While you read, I suggest you listen to some of the huge selection of his performances on his website (below).

I was very irritated seeing that the articles about e. g. William Thomas Best, Alfred Hollins or John Ebenezer West have been eliminated from the new edition of the the “New Grove’s Dictionary of Music.” Somewhere I read that the organ music of these composers would not be “serious” or “important” enough. Speaking about British organ music only, names like e. g. Charles Hubert Hastings Parry, Charles Villiers Stanford, Alan Gray, Edward Elgar, Basil Harwood, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Frank Bridge, George Thalben-Ball or Percy Whitlock are mentioned.

His website is

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