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Thread: messiah accomp

  1. #1
    Midshipman, Forte
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    messiah accomp

    Hi all,

    ...curious what folks are using these days for Messiah accompaniment sources... when I play with orchestra, it's just continuo of course, but wondering what is the most useful edition for accompanying when it's just organ and choir...I have that score that's an arrangement by Hutton, (I think)... any better ideas? By the way, I'm playing a sing-in this year only on piano, so this query is actually for the future, because I know that situation is going to come up! --- thanks, best, jgirv

  2. #2
    Commodore con Forza
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    Chances are that organ editions are few and far between, since it seems that orchestra is the preferred accompaniment.

    It seems that, as with much else in music, the pace has quickened. Meaning tempi. The old (1959?) Tabernacle Choir recording had the Hallelujah Chorus at a noticeably slower tempo than seems common these days.

    This is something that sort of 'bugs' me. Of course, if one is Virgil Fox, your attitude is that it "doesn't matter" how the composers played their pieces. Only showing off virtuosity matters. But I very much have my doubts that Widor, Vierne, et.al. played their Cavaille-Colls as fast as some of these show-offs play electric-action organs nowadays. In his autobiography, even Albert Schweitzer claimed that "Bach is played altogether too fast", except that he wrote that in German!!

    Obviously, an organ can't do what an orchestra can. So in many cases, organ editions for accompaniment of choral works would be welcome.

    Concertmaster?????
    Last edited by dll927; Dec-12-2008 at 18:44.

  3. #3
    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    As it turns out, I am the solo organ accompanist to Part I of the Messiah for a performance on Dec 19th. I have the Schirmer Publication, edited by T.Tertius Noble - it has all the choir, solo and accompaniment parts.

    I wanted to get the organ accompaniment (I've used a borrowed copy before and it was lots easier on the eyes) but there wasn't enough time to get it here before the performance, as I was contracted for this performance just 3 weeks ago!! Yeesh!!
    Kh ~~.
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  4. #4
    Commander, Assistant Conductor
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    Hi jgirv

    I'm a bit late picking up on this thread and by now your annual 'Messiah' performance may well have passed. However, here's a suggestion for next time. If the accompaniment is to be organ (or keyboard) only you will find plenty of editions in vocal score with keyboard accompaniment suitable for organ or piano (or,indeed, for harpsichord). The most accurate and scholarly edition I know is the one by Watkins Shaw. I have, in the past, variously conducted and accompanied 'Messiah' (on separate occasions, of course!).

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    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krummhorn View Post
    . . . I wanted to get the organ accompaniment (I've used a borrowed copy before and it was lots easier on the eyes) but there wasn't enough time to get it here before the performance . . .
    On January 10th, I special ordered the Organ Score (arranged by Warren Hutton and Mary Lou Robinson) from Musicroom[dot]com. It's an outfit in the UK somewhere and ships worldwide.

    As it turns out, any US music house has to special order it, and they all order from Musicroom in the UK oddly enough - so I went directly to the source and avoided the middleman (and their added costs). Received an email on January 30th that my order has been shipped. . Should have it around the 16th of February, plenty of time before Easter.
    Kh ~~.
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  6. #6
    Midshipman, Forte
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    krummhorn,

    did you like the organ arrangement? I found it did indeed give some solutions for certain passages, but I ended up using it as a reference for certain choruses. thanks for the replies everyone. - jgirv

  7. #7
    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Hi jgirv,

    Yes ... this particular score adapts well to the vocal score book, and I have successfully used it to accompany our choir without any problems. I especially like having the pedal part scored separately and the fact of fewer pages to turn.
    Kh ~~.
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  8. #8
    Midshipman, Forte
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    ...indeed, fewer page turns is a real help! When I need to accompany "Rejoice greatly" on the piano, this is the edition I use...

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