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Morning Worship Radio 4 Today


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Ah yes, an excellent example of how to fashion a good tune out of a mere six notes. In fact, most of the interest is crafted out of only five notes since the highest note is used just once, being reserved most tellingly for the final phrase.

 

Why does it work so well? Because it is superbly shaped. The first four bars are an arch, beginning on the tonic (F) and rising to the subdominant (B flat) before falling again. The next four bars start on a higher note, the dominant (C ), before returning to the tonic, so that the whole of the first line constitutes a long arch from tonic to dominant and back again, with a smaller arch contained therein. This is then repeated.

 

The second half of the tune is shaped differently. Whereas the first two lines have their focus on the tonic note, in the last two this is transferred to the dominant of the scale, C. Now the general tessitura is consistently higher and the phrases have a descending shape in which sequence is important and in which the tonic is scrupulously avoided (until the final note). There is also a unifying factor in that the general contour of the first half of the last line is a condensed version of the whole of line three. Then, in the last phrase of all, the tune finally reaches its highest note, providing the climax to the tune, before falling back to the tonic. All quite masterly.

 

Apologies to all who, like me, find that writing and reading musical analyses saps the will to live. I shall now have to revive my spirits with a small scotch. :lol:

 

I mentioned half-hours quite loosely merely to explain the general point. I was not referring specifically to the service.

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:P but I don't recommend Vox revive his sapped spirits with a small welsh!

 

Au contraire, I commend Penderyn Welsh whisky to all - a fine spirit introduced to me by a very distant Gog relative some years ago.

 

Diolch yn fawr Uncle Dafydd!

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Guest Patrick Coleman
Au contraire, I commend Penderyn Welsh whisky to all - a fine spirit introduced to me by a very distant Gog relative some years ago.

 

Diolch yn fawr Uncle Dafydd!

 

Indeed - and if Vox has not made its acquaintance, I am happy to take him to the distillery for a tour. :P

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I have indeed tried Penderyn. Very nice indeed for a young spirit. I'm looking forward to a few years' time when they have more mature expressions on the market. If I'm ever up your way, Patrick, I'll take you up on that offer!

 

Sorry for the totally off topic post. :P

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A great improvement! I liked the descant and reharmonisation of Was Lebet - also the second piece the choir sang - contemporary - anybody know what it was? It sounded to me like something Christopher Walker might have written.

 

 

Cheers

We still had a cheesy "voice-over" though. :P

 

But I must say that I was very taken with June Collin's anthem "The Quiet Heart" - the close harmony was so nicely done.

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Script not yet up on website when I looked, but it should appear here

 

 

Thanks. Bernadette Farrell, of course. I knew it had to be one of the Thomas More group. In fact, and this is disturbing, I actually played it at a teachers' Mass about 6 months ago. My memory is going rapidly. Why? (No - not too much tonic, please :) )

 

Peter

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I thought today's broadcast one of the best I have heard for a long time, and it was genuinely moving, a fine match of words and music. Even the "Make me a channel" was upliftingly performed (though I was a little uneasy about "One more step" despite the presenter's justification of it - but it was a good arrangement).

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I thought today's broadcast one of the best I have heard for a long time, and it was genuinely moving, a fine match of words and music. Even the "Make me a channel" was upliftingly performed (though I was a little uneasy about "One more step" despite the presenter's justification of it - but it was a good arrangement).

 

 

'Morning Peter - 'agree totally - anyony know what the music after was - improvised perhaps?

 

A

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Guest Echo Gamba
Thanks. Bernadette Farrell, of course. I knew it had to be one of the Thomas More group. In fact, and this is disturbing, I actually played it at a teachers' Mass about 6 months ago. My memory is going rapidly. Why? (No - not too much tonic, please :lol: )

 

Peter

 

Hmm - reminds me of the time a (mutual :rolleyes: ) friend decided to serve wine and nibbles after Midnight Mass one year, and no-one partook - so he turned up on my doorstep at 03.00, shortly after my wife and I had retired for a short night, on Christmas morning with the opened bottles, one each of red, white, and bubbly............. :unsure::o:lol::(

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Thanks. Bernadette Farrell, of course. I knew it had to be one of the Thomas More group. In fact, and this is disturbing, I actually played it at a teachers' Mass about 6 months ago. My memory is going rapidly. Why? (No - not too much tonic, please :rolleyes: )

 

Peter

The only piece I ever heard by B.F was "And if a grain (of wheat shall fall)" which I quite like. Didn't know she did Psalm 139 as well.

 

Dave

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I have indeed tried Penderyn. Very nice indeed for a young spirit. I'm looking forward to a few years' time when they have more mature expressions on the market. If I'm ever up your way, Patrick, I'll take you up on that offer!

 

Sorry for the totally off topic post. :rolleyes:

Hi Vox,

 

I believe I am right in thinking that the rail service between Cardiff Central and Ebbw Vale calls at Llanhilleth, from which Abertillery is not too far away. There you go: you now have an incentive to fix something up.....

 

Dave

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Many people in my area, including me, don't like Hyfrydol. (Sorry, Patrick, nothing personal about Wales but it always seems to be raining when I'm in Wales!) I think the best tune for "Alleluia, sing to Jesus" is "Hillingdon" which Walter Vale wrote for All Saints' Margaret Street when he was D-of-M there is the first half of the last century. They still use it and I introduced it at a Brighton church a few years ago. Very singable (slightly reminiscent of Sullivan's Lux Eoi) but the only place I have ever found it is the old Mirfield Mission Hymn Book which, for its time, was quite progressive. I expect it was one of the first books - if not the first - to have Nicholson's tune "Crucifer" to Lift high the Cross.

 

Malcolm

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I enjoyed this morning's - the opening introit (tautology?) I did't recognise but it was lively. I enjoyed the story about the man and his horse. The service closed with one of my all-iume favourites which was nicely reharmonised for the last verse. Only two reservations: the descant to Gutting Power (a personal thing - I've never been stuck on it) and that rather eccentric amen at the end. Any more thoughts?

 

Peter

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Guest Patrick Coleman

I'm sorry but I switched it over to Radio 3 at the second hymn. I find the doctrine of penal substitution offensive in the extreme, and I refuse point blank to have that hymn sung in any of my churches. (I don't have many areas of absolute intolerance, but that's a place where I do draw a line).

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I was waiting, as ever, for the Lord's Prayer - always my favourite part of a service from that area - "for thine is the kingdom, the PRWRWRWR and the glory". Disappointed on this occasion. It's well worth listening again to A Point of View directly afterwards.

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To draw a link with a thread which was recently running - 'King's College Cambridge' and comparisons members have drawn, favourable or otherwise with St John's choir.

St John's sounded on superb form yesterday morning under their current director Andrew Nethsingha.

 

DT

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How wonderful it was to hear such first rate singing. The whole service was very fine, I thought, despite the rather "folky" introit (which, I hasten to add, was very competently done and wouldn't have raised my eyebrows at all in any context that didn't have me suspecting that it was a concession to the sort of junk the Beeb normally prefers).

 

Full marks, too, to the organ student for his excellent accompaniment of VW's "Let all the Word" and his discreet sensitivity in the psalm.

 

Wasn't the psalm a bit slow though? "O Lord our govenor, how excellent is thy name..." had all the enthusiasm of a team of civil servants studiously preparing a speech for Sir Humphrey rather than a choir praising its maker. But then again, I'm full up to here with the praise brigade, so I mustn't complain. Actually I did wonder whether the building was dictating the speed. I had the feeling that, if it had been any faster, the words might have got lost.

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