The organist and harpsichordist John Worgan (1724–90) was one of the most highly respected musicians in the London of his day: Handel admired his playing, and Burney described him as ‘very masterly and learned’. Worgan was the organist of Vauxhall Gardens and of a number of London churches and naturally composed for his own instruments. Most of his music is lost, but his fifth son, James Worgan, also a musician, had fifteen of his father’s organ pieces published after his death. Here they are performed on the organ of St Botolph’s without Aldgate (perhaps England’s oldest surviving church organ), where Worgan himself was organist from 1753 until his demise – the perfect vehicle for this quirky but proud music.
Timothy Roberts, Organ
Catalogue No: TOCC0332EAN/UPC: 5060113443328Release Date: 01.02.2016Composer: John Worgan Artists: Timothy Roberts
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John France :
“I suggest that the listener explore this CD slowly. I worked through the programme in track order, but taking only three pieces at a time. The first-rate notes on the music give a detailed synopsis of each piece and reward reading before hearing. … This organ music, which was published around 1795, is enjoyable, and leans towards the style of Handel more than any other composer; it shares ‘the (same) brilliance, drama and grandeur’. … I loved the ambience of this recording. … The CD is true to the outstanding sound of this historic instrument. It is of considerable importance to have this CD of the complete organ works of John Worgan played on this particular instrument. As noted above, Worgan was organist here for many years. So, it is a supremely important historical production. I hope that this disc may be the first of a number exploring the music of this important composer.” –Music Web International, March 2016
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