Julia Gooding, Claudia Sanabras (sopranos), Richard Savage (bass) & Timothy Roberts on the Renatus Harris Organ of St Botolph's, Aldgate
SFZ Music are pleased to announce their latest release, a delightful programme of organ and vocal music by John Blow, Henry Purcell, and their contemporaries and pupils. Built in 1704, the organ of St Botolph, Aldgate is one of the most reliable witnesses to the sound of English church music of the late 17th and early 18th centuries. It is the oldest surviving English church organ, and the only surviving instrument by the great organbuilder Renatus Harris. In 2006, following a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the organ was painstakingly and thoroughly restored to its original state by Martin Goetze and Dominic Gwynn. Timothy Roberts was for a long time the organist of His Majestys Sagbutts & Cornetts and is a distinguished recitalist specialising in Baroque and Renaissance music.
"a splendid collection of fine music… the result is so convincing in the two tracks where the audience participates in performances of two Psalms that we are caught up in a genuine recreation of the kind of atmosphere in which much of this music was first heard and for which it was intended. The majority of the pieces here are Voluntaries by Blow, finely played by Timothy Roberts, with other music by Purcell, John Reading, William Richardson and Jeremiah Clarke, the entire collection forming a valuable conspectus of music of the time, and well recorded on the oldest surviving English church organ, at St Botolph's, Aldgate dating from about 1704. The vocal items are excellently done, and all in all this makes a really worthwhile and most useful addition to the discography of the period. Texts are included." The Organ