Sowerby at Trinity
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The reverential sound of Sowerby's organ music may remind you of Vaughan-Williams or Barber.

The Suite for Organ (1933-34) is a collection of four works unrelated in form or theme: Choral and Fugue, Fantasy for Flute Stops, Air with Variations and March. Nevertheless, Sowerby recommended that the movements not be played separately, but together, as an organic whole, as Dr. Freese has done on this recording. Although the composer wrote many solo organ works, he also composed pieces that combined the organ with other instruments, such as Fantasy for Trumpet and Organ (1961). At the head of the score, Sowerby wrote: "The organ registration must be bright and carefully balanced to the trumpet; it should be very clear, avoiding too much foundation tone and, except perhaps in the closing sections, all celestes. A liberal use of 4', 2' and Mixtures is suggested in the quicker sections." Sowerby's Symphony No. 4 was premiered by Koussevitsky and the Boston Symphony Orchestra on January 7, 1949. The composer was so impressed by the playing of the English hornist Louis Speyer, that he wrote his Ballade for him. It was premiered by Speyer and E. Power Biggs on a CBS radio program on June 12, 1949. Dr. Freese makes a major contribution to the Sowerby recorded legacy with her performance of Rhapsody. This seldom heard work is huge; a major work of heroic proportions. During his Prix de Rome stay, Sowerby was impressed by the playing of the young Italian virtuoso, Fernando Germani, organist at the Vatican. When Sowerby returned to the U.S., he wrote Pageant, a pedal extravaganza, as a challenge to this sure footed performer. Germani accepted the challenge and said after seeing the score; "Now write me something really difficult."
Contents:
Leo Sowerby, composer
Suite for Organ
Faythe Freese, organ

Leo Sowerby, composer
Fantasy for Trumpet and Organ
Faythe Freese, organ, Bobby Lewis, trumpet and flugelhorn

Leo Sowerby, composer
Ballade
Faythe Freese, organ

Leo Sowerby, composer
Rhapsody
Faythe Freese, organ

Leo Sowerby, composer
Pageant
Faythe Freese, organ

Review:
"...discover an engaging world of powerful emotion and stimulating ideas." (The American Organist)
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