Vox Humana, English Suite, Beethoven’s Ruin, and Drdla’s Souvenir

Greetings! At this time, the snow and ice in Charlotte are retreating; they say that when the melting is this slow, the remaining snow is simply waiting around for the next batch. February’s selection represents wide variety in styles and periods, and I hope you find something you’d like to play.

1. OFFERTOIRE FOR VOX HUMANA, by Eugene Thayer. Thayer wrote this one for his friend, F A Stearns, who published “A Collection of Original Pieces for the Organ, for Church or Concert use” and was commissioned to contribute this piece. John Apple writes that the specific stop in the title was indicated due Thayer’s familiarity with the beautiful Vox Humana on the great organ in the Boston Music Hall which now resides in Methuen. Thayer’s love of the sound of this Vox can be seen in two of his collections, his First and Second Settings of offertoires. 1864; 1870. You may also be interested in some of the other seven pieces from this collection including two by George Morgan.

2. SCENES IN NORTHUMBERLAND, by Frederic H Wood. If you don’t know the “Scenes” suites by Wood, you have a treat in store. This one is his second suite and describes four places in Northumberland. You can play them separately or together as a full suite. I have already restored his fourth and last suite, Scenes on the Downs.

3. TURKISH MARCH FROM “THE RUINS OF ATHENS,” by Beethoven, arranged by Clarence Dickinson and Charlotte Lockwood. Their fun duet for four hands is an arrangement of the entire Turkish March from Beethoven’s incidental music from the play. It’s not long and is a great encore for an duo.

4. SOUVENIR, by Franz Drdla, arranged by Quentin Maclean. I got this from Lew Williams who recommended Maclean’s arrangement. John Apple compared multiple versions and agreed that Maclean’s was the best. I am pleased to present Thomas Brown’s article from The Canadian Encyclopedia on Maclean telling the story of his life. An English theatre and radio organist, he emigrated to Canada in 1939 to perform and teach in Toronto. I offer two recordings of Drdla’s original music for violin and piano.

MONTHLY DISCOUNT BUNDLE. To get the four pieces mentioned above, I offer a special price so you can buy all of the pieces above with one click and save money in the deal. I welcome your support, and if you don’t want to play a particular piece in the group, consider giving it to a student or another organist.

I have received a better price structure for 2016 on shipments going outside of the USA, so I have reprogrammed these lower prices into the shopping cart. This means at least a US$2.00 reduction for all of you who receive international shipments. Unlike some companies, MMS has always shipped worldwide without a large surcharge; we love all organists, worldwide!

Thank you for your interest in this music. As you have seen, your suggestions do make a difference, and I hope that I offer the music that you want to play.


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