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Epiphany suite : Suite on a Gregorian Theme

by Brett McKern (2012, this version: 2013)

Work Overview

This three movement suite for solo organ has two names is such that it can be played especially as a work celebrating the Feast of the Epiphany (6 January), or simply as a work based on a Gregorian melody. It is based on the chant Ecce advenit dominator Dominus, the Introit proper to the Epiphany. Organist Kurt Ison commissioned the first movement for his recital in Westminster Abbey, London on 6 January 2013. He suggested a passacaglia such that the sectional nature of the work would lend itself to varying registrations allowing the audience to hear many colours of the great Abbey organ. While based on the concept of a passacaglia, there are differences in construction to the Baroque works of the same title. It was the concept of movements based on a contemporary interpretation of Baroque suite movements, and the Passacaglias positive reception that led to the composition of the rest of the Suite. Although famous sarabandes originally for solo organ are not readily found, here is a contemporary interpretation of the form. The Gigue Fugue, is more solemn than the famous Gigue Fugue in G by J.S. Bach, and closes the suite more similarly to the first movement.

Work Details

Year: 2012, this version: 2013

Instrumentation: Organ

Duration: 15 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

First performance: by Kurt Ison — 24 Jun 12. St Mary's Cathedral Sydney


Performances of this work

20 Jun 15: St John's Cathedral, Brisbane, Qld. Featuring Kurt Ison.

12 Apr 15: Washington National Cathedral, Washington, USA. Featuring Kurt Ison.

11 Oct 14: Hunter Ballie Church, Annandale, NSW. Featuring Kurt Ison.

24 Aug 14: St John's Cathedral, Brisbane, Qld. Featuring Andrej Kouznetsov.

26 Jan 14: Chapel, Martin Luther College, MN, USA. Featuring Brent Noble.

5 Jan 14: Trinity College, University of Melbourne. Featuring Heather Moen-Boyd.

17 Nov 13: Christ Church St Laurence, Sydney. Featuring Kurt Ison.

26 Jun 13: St Paul's Cathedral, Melbourne. Featuring Kurt Ison.

6 Jan 13: Westminster Abbey, London, UK. Featuring Kurt Ison.

24 Jun 12: St Mary's Cathedral Sydney. Featuring Kurt Ison.

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