Christmas Organ Concert & New CD Recording

Tue, 2 December 2014

If you are visiting the Christmas Market in the grounds of the Cathedral, why not take time out from the festive rush and enjoy serene music and space for quiet reflection in the Cathedral? On Sunday 7th December at 5.15pm, Assistant Master of the Music at the Cathedral, Tom Winpenny, will play La Nativité du Seigneur, a series of nine short meditations on the Christmas story by the doyen of French organ composers, Olivier Messiaen.

The recital coincides with the release of Tom Winpenny’s recording on the Cathedral organ of the famous work, which is being released internationally in December on the Naxos label. Copies will be available from the Cathedral shop.

 Tom Winpenny said: “Messiaen’s music is some of the most vivid and evocative in the organ repertoire, and this work has become something of a modern classic.  Lasting about 60 minutes, the performance of La Nativité provides the perfect time for quiet reflection at the end of an afternoon’s shopping, and time to appreciate the stillness of the Cathedral and to reflect on the Christmas story.  This colourful and engaging work, which includes movements depicting the Virgin and Child, the shepherds, and the kings, displays magnificently the colours of the Cathedral Organ’s renowned Harrison & Harrison organ – from the most delicate soft sounds to the majesty of the full organ.”

 This free recital precedes Choral Evensong at 6.30pm, with music for Advent sung by the Cathedral Choir. 

 View event listing for 'La Nativité'

Notes for editors

Tom Winpenny took up the post of Assistant Master of the Music at St Albans Cathedral in September 2008, where his duties include accompanying the daily choral services and assisting in the training of the Cathedral choristers. He also directs the Abbey Girls Choir and the Abbey Singers. Previously, he was Sub-Organist at St Paul's Cathedral, and during this time, he performed with the Cathedral Choir at the American Guild of Organists National Convention, performed in Mahler's Symphony no. 8 with Valery Gergiev and the LSO, and played for many great state occasions. He has also broadcast regularly on BBC Radio 2, 3 and 4, and his solo recordings have been released to critical acclaim. Last Christmas he performed at the Royal Albert Hall alongside the Cathedral Choirs in John Rutter’s Christmas concerts.

Further information on the CD release is available at the Naxos records website.

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