Music at GMC: DVD Screening: Widor - Master of the Organ Symphony

Music at GMC

DVD Screening:
Widor - Master of the Organ Symphony

Event: DVD Screening
Date: 2pm, Saturday 12th March, 2016
Introduced by: Will Fraser (Fugue State Films)

Charles-Marie Widor (1844-1937) is the most famous composer of organ music since JS Bach and wrote ten revolutionary organ symphonies that established the organ as a rival to the orchestra, pioneered the use of symphonic forms for the instrument and sublimated influences as diverse as Bach's fugues, Wagner's music dramas and mediaeval plainchant into an original musical language. On top of this, his Toccata is probably the best-loved piece of organ music ever written.

Fugue State Films have recently released a boxed-set that provides a complete portrait of this great composer. The centerpiece is a magnificent three-part documentary showing how Widor came to write his organ symphonies, how his compositional style developed and matured, and how these works fit into his overall career as a performer, teacher and writer. We shall be screening selected excerpts from this documentary along with a stunning recording of the entire fifth symphony on one of the best-surviving Cavaillé-Coll instruments, Saint-Ouen in Rouen.

These recordings provide the content and context of Widor as master of the organ symphony and we presented them in mesmerising surround-sound on the large cinema screen in the Church Hall. Stunning!

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